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Office of the Election Supervisor for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters













October 25, 1996



James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

Page 1



James P. Hoffa

2593 Hounds Chase

Troy, MI 48098


Ron Carey, General President

International Brotherhood of Teamsters

25 Louisiana Avenue, N.W.

Washington, DC 20001


Robert Wenger, Trustee

Teamsters Joint Council 1

6051 Carey Drive

Valley View, OH 44125


Stand Up for Teamsters Slate

c/o Leroy Ellis, Jr.

10733 S. Western Avenue

Chicago, IL 60643

John Sullivan, Associate General Counsel

International Brotherhood of Teamsters

25 Louisiana Avenue, N.W.

Washington, DC 20001


Ron Carey Campaign

c/o Nathaniel Charny

Cohen, Weiss & Simon

330 W. 42nd Street

New York, NY 10036


Bradley T. Raymond

Finkel, Whitefield, Selik, Raymond

  Ferrara & Feldman, P.C.

32300 Northwestern Highway, Suite 200

Farmington Hills, MI 48334

James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

Page 1



Re:  Election Office Case Nos. P-1034-JC1-CLE





James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

Page 1



James P. Hoffa, a member of Local Union 614 and candidate for general president, filed pre-election protests pursuant to Article XIV, Section 2(b) of the Rules for the IBT International Union Delegate and Officer Election (Rules) alleging violations of the Rules at the first annual Joint Council 1 Stewards Leadership and Training Seminar, held on September 28 and 29, 1996.  In P-1034-JC1-CLE, Mr. Hoffa alleges that IBT General President and candidate for reelection Ron Carey emphasized his campaign themes and engaged in other conduct which constituted campaigning in a speech at the seminar.  He also alleges that a Carey campaign videotape was shown.  In P-1045-JC1-CLE, Mr. Hoffa alleges that Carey campaign materials were pervasively affixed to property owned by the hotel, the phone company, the power company and/or others.  The Election Officer consolidated these protests for decision because they arise from the same event and involve similar issues under the Rules.


This protest was investigated by Regional Coordinator Joyce Goldstein.


Joint Council 1 sponsored its first annual Stewards Leadership and Training Seminar on Saturday, September 28, and Sunday, September 29, 1996, at the Holiday Inn in Hudson, Ohio.  Approximately 600 stewards attended. 


The joint council submitted a copy of the program to the Election Officer.  The only Saturday event was a cocktail reception from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.  On Sunday, the program ran from 9:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  It opened with remarks by Joint Council 1 President Gary Tiboni and continued with:  presentations by two arbitrators on just cause and due process; a presentation on organizing by a member of the IBT Organizing Department; a presentation by a lawyer on arbitrating discharge cases; and an update on pension and welfare benefits.  Following a break, there was an address by Mr. Carey.  Then the program closed with an address by Local Union 473 Secretary-Treasurer Carmen Parise.


The investigation also showed that Mr. Parise showed a video, not listed on the program schedule, concerning the IBT Convention.  This video was an edited version of a

15-minute videotape produced by the Carey campaign, entitled No Mob Rule.


1.              Allegations Concerning Conduct During the Stewards Seminar



Mr. Hoffa makes three allegations of improper campaign activity during the Joint Council 1 stewards seminar program.  His general charge is that [c]ampaigning by Carey operatives at this event was . . . pervasive.  With respect to Mr. Careys address, he alleges that his remarks were carefully scripted, but . . . he made a number of pointed and critical references to those guys who are opposing me and those people who claim retaliation.’”  Mr. Hoffa contends that the retaliation remark referred to a protest filed by Mr. Hoffa two days before Mr. Careys speech in which Mr. Hoffa alleged that Mr. Carey engaged in retaliation against Mr. Hoffa by threatening to file a libel action over accusations made during campaigning.  The third allegation is that the videotape shown by Mr. Parise was campaign material and that the Election Officer has so found in other decisions addressing prior showings by two other local unions.


The protester identified four witnesses to substantiate his allegations:  Local Union 507 Steward Tony DAndrea, Local Union 507 Steward Joe Molnar, Local Union 24 Steward Dave Richards, and Local Union 348 member Pat Darrow.  The Regional Coordinator interviewed those four witnesses, as well as Local Union 507 Steward Gwen Lucas, Joint Council 1 Director Robert Wenger, Joint Council 1 outside counsel John Masters (who gave the presentation on arbitrating discharge cases), and Mr. Parise.  The Election Officers

James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

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representative also viewed a videotape of Mr. Careys address and a copy of the videotape shown by Mr. Parise.


A.  Allegation of general campaigning


Mr. Hoffas allegation of pervasive campaigning by Carey operatives at the seminar is not supported by the testimony of any witness.  Except for the situations of Mr. Careys speech and Mr. Parises videotape, discussed separately below, the only allegations of any campaign-related activity involved the wearing of personal campaign paraphernalia and a paraphernalia-related comment from one member to another.  Thus, several witnesses stated that some attendees wore Hoffa or Carey campaign paraphernalia to the cocktail reception on Saturday evening.  One witness recounted an incident in which a person wearing a Carey shirt made a campaign-related comment to a person wearing a Hoffa shirt.


Under the Rules, the wearing of personal campaign material is generally protected.[1]  The Election Officer further notes that some attendees wore Hoffa material, and some wore Carey material.  Thus, there is no evidence of discrimination at the reception.  Furthermore, the Rules do not prohibit members from making election-related comments to each other in personal conversation.  Such comments are protected under the Rules as the natural discourse that arises as a result of campaign-related activities.  Sheibley, P-1010-LU653-ENG

(October 14, 1996); Furst, P-949-LU430-PNJ (October 9, 1996). 


On Sunday, Ms. Lucas states that a sergeant-at-arms would not let her into the meeting room until she removed a Hoffa campaign button.  However, she also states that she put it back on after seeing other persons wearing Carey buttons, and that she kept it on without incident for the remainder of the day.  The Election Officer finds that Ms. Lucas had protected right to wear the button and that she did so.  The sergeant-at-arms instruction was incorrect, and Ms. Lucas was within her rights under the Rules to ignore it.  No other witness reported a similar incident.  Thus, the Election Officer finds that no further action is necessary.


B.  Allegation that Mr. Careys speech contained campaigning


The Election Officers representative has viewed a videotape of Mr. Careys speech, which lasted approximately 20 minutes.  The content of the speech covered the importance of the stewards role, the difficulty of the job, the need for training and for new strategies in dealing with employers, the new training and strategic initiatives undertaken by Joint

Council 1, the need for a strong partnership with the International, the need for political involvement relating to the U.S. presidential and Congressional elections, and some successes

James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

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that Mr. Carey claimed the International has achieved.  He did not take questions and left immediately after his address for a voter registration rally related to the federal elections.


Mr. Carey did not mention the International officer election or any candidate.  He made few references to his personal role in union matters.  The basic themes were the grass-roots work of stewards, the new initiatives of Joint Council 1, and the overall job of the International as an institution.  The Election Officer finds no campaign tone or content in the speech.


In his protest, Mr. Hoffa objects to Mr. Careys references to those guys who are opposing me and those people who claim retaliation, linking those comments to a protest that Mr. Hoffa had just filed.  The Election Officers investigation revealed that those references occurred during a portion of Mr. Careys address referring to the formation of Joint Council 1.  Mr. Carey stated, I took a lot of heat for it, and claimed that the joint councils formation saved thousands of dollars that it is using for steward training and new programs.  Mr. Carey then stated, I dont mind criticism from those with their hands stuck in the cookie jar.  He accuses such persons of not being interested in making the union stronger or in putting the image of corruption behind the union: cause every time we take a step against corruption, they say Its retaliation.’”


Upon review of Mr. Careys speech as a whole, the Election Officer finds that

Mr. Careys references to persons opposing him and claiming retaliation relate primarily to the controversy over the formation of Joint Council 1 mentioned at that point in his address.  The Election Officer addressed that controversy in Faulkner, P-293-IBT-CLE (March 25, 1996), affd, 96 - Elec. App. - 159 (April 4, 1996), in which members associated with Joint

Council 41, out of which Joint Council 1 was formed in part, alleged that Mr. Carey and the IBT General Executive Board created the joint council for campaign-related reasons and in retaliation for the protesters political opposition to Mr. Carey.  The IBT defended the formation as being based on legitimate reasons, including the elimination of multiple salaries, the lowering of per capita assessments, democratic reforms in the new joint council bylaws, and on projected new initiatives.  The Election Officer found that the formation of Joint Council 1 did not violate the Rules, and the Election Appeals Master affirmed.


The other natural reference for the protested remarks is the internal union debate over Mr. Careys imposition of trusteeships on certain local unions for alleged wrongdoing by officers.  The themes of that debate are charges of corruption and counter-charges of retalia-tionSee, e.g., Executive Board, Teamsters Local Union 745, P-247-IBT-SCE (January 22, 1996), affd, 96 - Elec. App. - 74 (KC) (February 6, 1996).


Thus, the Election Officer does not interpret the protested remarks as referring to the protest that Mr. Hoffa had just filed, and finds instead that Mr. Carey was referring to legitimate subjects of internal union debate.  The Election Officer has . . . repeatedly stated that the IBT . . . may make known the IBT administrations position on a variety of issues, regardless of whether those issues are also the subject of debate amongst the candidates. 

James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

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Hoffa, P-796-IBT-SCE (June 20, 1996).  Thus, the Election Officer finds no campaign content in Mr. Careys address.


C.  Allegation that Mr. Parises videotape constituted campaigning


The Election Officers representative also viewed a copy of the videotape shown by Mr. Parise at the conclusion of the stewards seminar.  As noted above, it was an edited version of a 15-minute video produced by the Carey campaign, entitled No Mob Rule.  The Election Officer addressed showings of the original video in Passo, P-921-LU705-CHI (September 25, 1996) (stewards meeting) and Fiori, P-988-LU726-CHI (October 11, 1996) (stewards meeting), and found such showings to constitute improper campaigning.[2]


The edited version shown at the Joint Council 1 stewards seminar is approximately

11 minutes long.  Mr. Parise states that he and Mr. Tiboni edited out critical references to

Mr. Hoffa from the original tape.  They also omitted the opening frames showing the title and the closing frames showing the address of Carey campaign headquarters.


The Election Officer finds that the edited version still constitutes campaigning.  As a preliminary matter, the Election Officer notes that the Carey campaigns production of the original video involved countless decisions on the selection of themes, the selection of footage, the arrangement of images, the writing of narration, and the editing of the video as a whole.  The deletion of portions of the video left in place all of the rest of Carey campaigns decisions on such matters.  Thus, the Election Officer cautions that it may be difficult or impossible to convert such a videotape, produced for campaign purposes, into a non-campaign presentation.


In any event, the Election Officer finds that Messrs. Parise and Tiboni left in overt campaign material.  For example, the edited version shown at the stewards meeting includes footage of a Carey campaign rally outside of the Philadelphia Convention Hall and of

Mr. Carey speaking from the podium in his capacity as a candidate at that rally.


The video still includes a section that opposes the candidacy of Mr. Hoffa and his slate.  The sequence includes narration that the Carey slate fought at the Convention for the suspension of Frank Wsol, a local union official charged with encouraging the firing of a UPS driver for criticizing the local.  The video then cuts immediately to scenes of

James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

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Mr. Hoffas post-nomination floor demonstration.  The soundtrack plays Taking Care of Business, which was one of the songs chosen by the Hoffa campaign for its demonstration.  The narrator states in a critical tone that it was the Hoffa slates theme song and that it couldnt have been more appropriate.  The next cut is to Mr. Hoffa holding up the hand of William Hogan during the nomination process, and the scene is emphasized, as in the original version of the video, by quick editing to repeat the motion.


A final example of overt campaign material remaining in the edited version is a closing sequence, in which the narrator states that the real battle will be in the rank-and-file election in November.  The view is of a Carey campaign rally.  The video then cuts to a portion of Mr. Careys nomination acceptance speech on his fight against corruption.


As the Election Officer found in Passo and Fiori with respect to the original Carey campaign video, the version edited by Messrs. Parise and Tiboni could not be shown at a union meeting without observing the requirements of advance notice and equal access in Article VIII, Section 5 of the Rules.  In Passo and Fiori, the Election Officer found that the Carey campaign tape supported Mr. Careys slate.  The edited version still does so.  There-fore, advance notice of an opportunity for slate campaigning should have been given to the

Jim Hoffa-No Dues Increase-25 & Out Slate and to the Stand Up for Teamsters slate.  Joint Council 1s failure to do so violated the Rules.


2.              Allegations Concerning the Posting of Campaign Signs Outside the Hotel



Mr. Hoffa also alleges in connection with the Joint Council 1 stewards seminar that Carey campaign materials were pervasively affixed to property owned by the hotel, the phone company, the power company and/or others.  Mr. Hoffa submitted photographs taken by

Mr. DAndrea on September 30, 1996.  Mr. DAndrea states that they depict campaign material that was in place on September 29 during the stewards meeting.


The photographs show the following:  a narrow Carey campaign sign and one or two Carey campaign stickers on each of three light poles in the Holiday Inn parking lot; a narrow campaign sign on each of three utility poles on public rights of way; a campaign sticker on a stop sign; a campaign sticker on an outdoor pay telephone; and two campaign stickers on the back of an unidentified roadside sign.  None of the witnesses was able to give evidence on the identity of the person or persons who posted the campaign material.  Joint Council 1 denies that anyone from the joint council was involved.


James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

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The Election Officer has recently taken strong action to address the affixing of campaign signs and stickers to private property.  Willett, P- 863-LU331-PNJ (August 16, 1996) (putting campaign stickers on newly painted exterior of local union hall); Jensen, appeal pending, P-944-LU705-CHI (October 15, 1996) (putting campaign stickers on car of member who supports opposing candidate); Feeley, P-874-LU817-MGN (September 17, 1996) (putting campaign material on employer trucks at work sites of members of particular local union); Maney, P-956-IATSE-NYC et seq. (October 2, 1996) (putting campaign signs on local union float in Labor Day parade).  The Election Officer has also addressed the appearance of campaign material on employer trucks resulting from isolated acts by members, without evidence of local union involvement.  Knox, P-1006-SFD-MGN (October 14, 1996); Hoffa,

P-992-LU707-NYC et seq. (October 7, 1996). 


The appearances of campaign material protested by Mr. Hoffa in this matter raise none of those circumstances.  The Election Officer finds no evidence of Joint Council 1s sponsor-ship or involvement in the affixing of campaign material to light poles in the Holiday Inn parking lot or to public utility poles or signs on public rights of way.  With respect to such activity by individual members, the Election Officer stated in Braga, P-795-LU439-CSF

(June 19, 1996), that [u]nion members who choose to post campaign materials on public utility poles or public signs existing along public streets or sidewalks are not engaging in conduct which is either protected or sanctioned by the Rules.  Whether or not such actions fall under proscriptions in state and/or local law is outside the purview of the Rules.


For the foregoing reasons, the protest is GRANTED as to Joint Council 1s showing of the edited version of No Mob Rule and DENIED in all other respects.


When the Election Officer determines that the Rules have been violated, she may take whatever remedial action is appropriate.  Article XIV, Section 4.  In fashioning the appropriate remedy, the Election Officer views the nature and seriousness of the violation, as well as its potential for interfering with the election process.


In this matter, the Election Officer notes that Joint Council 1 subjected approximately 600 stewards to 11 minutes of Carey slate campaigning at a first annual event.  In Passo and Fiori, it was possible to order a similar opportunity for the Jim Hoffa-No Dues Increase-25 & Out Slate and the Stand Up for Teamsters slate to campaign at a stewards meeting before the International officer election.  Such an opportunity does not exist to reach all of Joint

Council 1s stewards in a single meeting.


Accordingly, the Election Officer orders the following.


(1) Joint Council 1 shall make a campaign mailing to each steward of Local Unions 24, 284, 293, 336, 377, 436, 473, 507, 510, and 836 on behalf of the Jim Hoffa-No Dues Increase-25 & Out Slate and on behalf of the Stand Up for Teamsters slate.  Within five (5) days of the date of this decision, each of those slates may supply Joint Council 1 with a one-sided piece of campaign material printed on 8½ x 11-inch paper.  Joint Council 1 shall bear the costs of duplication and mailing, and it shall make each mailing within three (3) days of its receipt of material from the Jim Hoffa-No Dues Increase-25 & Out Slate or the Stand Up for Teamsters slate.  No other material shall be included in either mailing, and the mailings shall not be combined.


(2) Within three (3) days after it completes the mailings, or within eight (8) days after the date of this decision if neither slate supplies campaign material, Joint Council 1 shall file an affidavit with the Election Officer demonstrating its compliance with this order.

James P. Hoffa

October 25, 1996

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An order of the Election Officer, unless otherwise stayed, takes immediate effect against a party found to be in violation of the RulesIn Re: Lopez, 96 - Elec. App. - 73 (KC) (February 13, 1996).


Any interested party not satisfied with this determination may request a hearing before the Election Appeals Master within one day of receipt of this letter.  The parties are reminded that, absent extraordinary circumstances, no party may rely upon evidence that was not presented to the Office of the Election Officer in any such appeal.  Requests for a hearing shall be made in writing and shall be served on:


Kenneth Conboy, Esq.

Latham & Watkins

885 Third Avenue, Suite 1000

New York, NY 10022

Fax (212) 751-4864


Copies of the request for hearing must be served on the parties listed above as well as upon the Election Officer, 400 N. Capitol Street, Suite 855, Washington, DC 20001, Facsimile

(202) 624-3525.  A copy of the protest must accompany the request for a hearing.






Barbara Zack Quindel

Election Officer



cc:               Kenneth Conboy, Election Appeals Master

Joyce Goldstein, Regional Coordinator


[1]As set forth in the Election Officer’s Advisory on Wearing of Campaign Buttons and Other Emblems, issued September 20, 1995, restrictions may be placed on the wearing of campaign paraphernalia for reasons of job safety or productivity, or where such a display may convey an incorrect impression of union or employer endorsement.

[2]Article VIII, Section 5(a)(4) provides:


A Local Union shall not discriminate or permit discrimination in favor or against any candidate in conjunction with its meeting or otherwise.  This requirement shall apply not only to formal presentations by or on behalf of candidates but also informal campaign activities, such as, for example, comments on candidates during meetings, literature distribution at meetings, literature distribution tables, etc.