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That battle begins and ends with long primary contests that many Democratic experts and officials believe will be decided exactly one year from now, on Pennsylvania's April 29 primary voting day.
"This nominating process certainly has all of the ingredients to go long, and the Democratic voters in this state hold the key to help defining our party as being the party of the working class," said Harold Schaitberger, the general president of the International Association of Fire Fighters, in an interview with The New York Post.
IAFF - Firefighters - Paramedics - Endorsement - Biden
The IAFF, which represents more than 316,000 full-time firefighters and paramedics, announced its endorsement of Biden in Pittsburgh, something Schaitberger said is one of the earliest endorsements it's ever done, and one it did not give Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump in the 2016 election.
"That marked the first time we've ever not endorsed in a presidential election," he said.
Schaitberger - Clinton - Labor - Biden
Schaitberger bluntly admits Clinton just did not connect with labor, but Biden does.
"We're also responsible to make sure that, quite frankly, the nominee isn't a nominee that is gonna take the party off the left cliff," he said. "It seems that too many candidates have high-minded, aspirational ideals, but it's not a recipe for winning and succeeding. And it doesn't really reflect in many ways the heart and soul of workers, middle-class workers."
IAFF - Influence - Process - Significance - Moment
If you think the IAFF's influence in the Democratic primary process is not of significance, a moment in the 2004 election cycle is often overlooked, when former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean had captured the imagination and speculation among the press and pundits.
"As you know, Howard Dean was gonna be the nominee. It was that simple -- at least, that is what everyone said, until all of a sudden, we snuck up and literally carried John through Iowa and through New Hampshire," Schaitberger said of John...
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