Massachusetts: New AFL-CIO President says he will not resign until a senate casino vote takes place

The new leader of the state’s largest labor union says he plans to stick around as a Democratic state senator, long enough to cast a vote in favor of casino gambling.

Newly elected AFL-CIO President, Senator Steven Tolman of Boston, is in his 7th term as a senator. He tells WATD-FM he plans to stick around as a state senator long enough to cast a vote in favor of an expanded gambling bill.

Senator Tolman was elected Wednesday at the AFL-CIO’s annual conference by the union’s members–of which there are more than 400 thousand statewide.

Tolman says plans to resign from his state senate seat sometime next week– either Tuesday or Thursday after the senate finishes voting on the gambling bill.

“I do want to be recorded on it,” said Tolman. “I think it’s an important issue for our economy, we’ll get 1,800 jobs, people back to work–The level of people who are unemployed is just outrageous  and we want to try and get those jobs going.”

Once Tolman resigns a special election will be needed to fill his seat.  He says he has no clue who is running, or who plans to run.

“We will have to find out who is in it [the race], and–remember now–as president of the AFL-CIO I will not be endorsing anybody unless the executive council would approve it,” said Tolman. “I won’t be playing a roll in filling my seat until the body I represent has a voice on that issue.”

Tolman says he is thrilled to be taking over as President of the state’s largest labor union, but admits he is also very nervous.

Tolman says that among his goals, is to bring several unions that have split off in recent years back into the AFL-CIO to give unions more clout.

Tolman replaces former President Bob Haynes who chose not to seek re-election.

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About Steven Dodrill

Steven Dodrill left the WATD news team in 2013. "Follow" him on Twitter At Franklin Pierce, Steven worked to introduce new forms of media like YouTube, and Twitter to the Franklin Pierce community.  Steven graduated Cum Laude and with honors in Mass Communication from Franklin Pierce University in May of 2009. Steven focused his education and experience in New Hampshire around sports broadcasting, digital media, broadcast journalism, news, media production, and political reporting. "Like" him on Facebook Dodrill also interned with the Harwich Mariners of the Cape Cod Baseball League during the summer of 2007, and most recently in the spring of 2009 he completed an internship in the newsroom at WMUR-TV in Manchester, NH.