Thursday night is a big night for both political parties in New York City, with the Democratic presidential candidates staging a presidential debate in Brooklyn and the Republican candidates appearing at a black-tie fundraiser at the New York Hilton.
But before they get to their big nights, the candidates will have to get through the big day planned by the Fight for $15 movement, which is staging major demonstrations and strikes in New York, Washington and hundreds of other cities around the country.
In Manhattan, marchers started gathering Thursday morning at the Times Square McDonald’s and planned a “die-in” at a McDonald’s in Brooklyn. The protests are expected to culminate in an afternoon march that would end at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, where all three of the major Republican candidates are scheduled to appear.
In Washington, a “massive strike” was scheduled at the U.S. Department of Labor, where the demand is for presidential candidates to pledge to issue a “model employer” executive order – also knows as the $15 and a union executive order” – if they enter the White House. So far, one of the presidential candidates – Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders – has agreed to the pledge. The other Democrat in the race, Hillary Clinton, has not.
The Huffington Post reported Wednesday that the Congressional Progressive Caucus’ leadership PAC, the Progressive Action PAC, secured the commitment from Sanders in response to a letter addressed to all of the presidential candidates.
The Huffington Post quotes Warren Gunnels, spokesperson for the Sanders campaign, as saying, “Yes, Senator Sanders is proud to commit to this … As president, Sen. Sanders looks forward to working with the Progressive Caucus to make this executive order a reality.”