Democrats threaten to skip next debate over labor dispute

Democrats threaten to skip next debate over labor dispute
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All seven Democratic candidates who qualified for next week's presidential debate in Los Angeles are threatening to skip it over a labor dispute at the university hosting the event.

The candidates said Friday that they won't attend the Dec. 19 event due to a dispute between workers at Loyola Marymount University and food services company Sodexo.

Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti rips Sanders over handling of feud with Warren On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans MORE (D-Mass.) and Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti rips Sanders over handling of feud with Warren On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans MORE (I-Vt.), the 2020 field's progressive heavyweights, were among the first to say they would boycott the event.

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They were soon joined by former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hillicon Valley: Biden calls for revoking tech legal shield | DHS chief 'fully expects' Russia to try to interfere in 2020 | Smaller companies testify against Big Tech 'monopoly power' Hill.TV's Krystal Ball on Sanders-Warren feud: 'Don't play to the pundits, play to voters' MORE, Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial On The Money — Presented by Wells Fargo — Sanders defends vote against USMCA | China sees weakest growth in 29 years | Warren praises IRS move on student loans Poll: Sanders holds 5-point lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire MORE (D-Minn.), South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegSanders to headline Iowa event amid impeachment trial Hill.TV's Krystal Ball on Sanders-Warren feud: 'Don't play to the pundits, play to voters' Poll: Sanders holds 5-point lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire MORE (D), and businessmen Andrew YangAndrew YangDNC announces new criteria for New Hampshire debate Poll: Sanders holds 5-point lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire Panel: Obama breaks Andrew Yang's heart MORE and Tom SteyerTom Fahr SteyerPoll: Sanders holds 5-point lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire Buttigieg takes dig at Sanders working 'for years' in Washington The Hill's Campaign Report: Sanders, Warren feud rattles Democrats MORE.

"The [Democratic National Committee] should find a solution that lives up to our party's commitment to fight for working people," Warren tweeted.

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The debate had been moved to Loyola Marymount University from the University of California, Los Angeles due to a separate labor dispute.

The union representing the workers, Unite Here Local 11, had said in a statement earlier Friday that "the leading contenders for the Democratic nomination will be greeted with picket lines at their replacement venue."

A Democratic National Committee (DNC) spokesperson told The Hill in a statement that it had learned of the issue Friday and was working to find a solution. 

“While LMU is not a party to the negotiations between Sodexo and Unite Here Local 11, Tom PerezThomas Edward PerezClinton’s top five vice presidential picks Government social programs: Triumph of hope over evidence Labor’s 'wasteful spending and mismanagement” at Workers’ Comp MORE would absolutely not cross a picket line and would never expect our candidates to either,” spokesperson Xochitl Hinojosa told The New York Times, referring to the DNC's chairman.

“We are working with all stakeholders to find an acceptable resolution that meets their needs and is consistent with our values and will enable us to proceed as scheduled with next week’s debate,” she added.