retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Financial Times reports that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Illinois), the presumptive Democratic nominee in the presidential election, “has again called on Tesco, the UK supermarket group, to let unions represent workers at its new US chain,” and has written a letter to this effect to Tesco CEO Sir Terry Leahy.

The letter comes as Obama looks to shore up his support from organized labor. He is scheduled to accept the official endorsement of the AFL-CIO later today.

FT writes that “Tesco, which plans to roll out hundreds of Fresh & Easy stores in California, Arizona and Nevada, has become a bugbear for the UFCW, which represents more than 1.3m employees at US supermarkets.

“The union launched the campaign against Tesco after being spurned by its US management. It includes a lawsuit against Tesco’s distribution centre and work­ing with local activist groups.”

KC's View:
Without judging whether Obama or McCain is a better candidate, I’d like to suggest that when either of them talks about not being a typical politician, it’d be refreshing if they’d reinforce the point by actually taking sides against one of their traditional constituencies.

Here’s the question that ought to be posed at the debates: Tell us one thing that you will do that will infuriate your base, and explain your rationale for making that decision of taking that position.