President-elect Joe Biden’s nominee to helm the department of labor has been linked to allegations of union extortion over the past decade.
Earlier this month, Biden announced that he had chosen Boston Mayor Marty Walsh as secretary of labor. Walsh, a former president of his city’s building and construction trades council, was considered a favorite of top labor leaders like AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka for the role. The mayor’s personal ties to Biden, who spoke at his 2017 city inaugural, also likely helped him clinch the post.
“He’s a friend and knows Joe: They’ve worked together on numerous occasions,” Trumka told Politico last year. “They have the relationship I think is necessary.”
Despite his ties to both Biden and labor leaders, Walsh’s links to allegations of strong arm union tactics and extortion could upend his nomination.
In August 2019, two high profile members of the mayor’s administration were convicted for allegedly violating federal law. Timothy Sullivan, Walsh’s former director of intergovernmental affairs, and Kenneth Brissette, the onetime head of Boston’s office of tourism, sports, and entertainment, were accused of conspiracy and extortion relating to a planned 2014 music festival.