Union leader Trumka calls Trump 'a bigot'

Greg Nash

A top labor union leader on Thursday leveled harsh criticism against Republican presidential front-runner Donald TrumpDonald TrumpFormer Reagan official to Trump: 'You are no Ronald Reagan' FULL SPEECH: Jennifer Granholm speaks to convention delegates Trump not budging on releasing tax returns MORE, arguing that his policies hurt U.S. workers. 

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said Trump is full of “baloney and bluster” and has shown through his actions that he is an anti-union candidate who won't lend a hand to struggling workers. 

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“He is also a bigot,” Trumka said in remarks to the Plasterers and Cement Workers union.

“From his anti-American proposal to ban Muslims to his horrendous comments about women and immigrants, Trump is running on hate," he said.  

"It seems the only group he won’t criticize is the KKK.”

Trumka has knocked the GOP field in the past but hadn't singled out Trump. 

Trumka again criticized Republican candidates for using “some of the ugliest, most racist and destructive language I have heard in my lifetime.”

By contrast, he said the Democratic candidates are having a "substantive and vigorous debate about how best to raise wages."

The AFL-CIO has yet to endorse either Democratic candidate. 

While Trumka acknowledged the New York businessman is tapping into the anger of working people, he has no clear path to raising wages or otherwise helping American workers. 

"When you look close, it’s just hot air," Trumka.

He noted that Trump has said U.S. wages are already too high and that he backs "right to work" policies that prohibit labor contracts from requiring workers to join a union or pay dues.

Last month, Trump said right to work is "better for the people" because it gives workers and businesses the choice of whether to support unions. 

Trumka also knocked Trump for providing financial support to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a former GOP presidential hopeful who waged a fight against labor unions in his state.

He also noted that Trump is fighting union workers at his hotel in Las Vegas over negotiating a new contract.

“We must come together to elect a president who will raise wages so working people can build better lives,” Trumka said during his speech.