The Peninsula Qatar   ·   Link to Article

Power of unions and advocacy groups in ‘battleground’ US states

A group of 20 journalists from around the world including Qatar recently had the opportunity to explore how American democracy is shaped not just through voting but through ongoing civic participation and community endeavours.

The international reporting tour ‘Democracy is More Than Election Day’ organised by the Global Public Affairs Bureau of the US Department of State through its Foreign Press Centers paved the way for the journalists to know in depth about the unfolding political landscape in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Columbus, Ohio, “battlegrounds” in the 2024 US elections.

In Nevada, a state that has proven time and again to be a trailblazer for political shifts, the efforts of Las Vegas’s unions are a powerful political driving force.


Las Vegas is experiencing economic growth, specifically in the sports and entertainment industry and infrastructure construction. Most importantly Las Vegas’s heavy reliance on the tourism and hospitality industry is backed by the Culinary Workers Union and its endorsement is coveted, and has led to the eventual election of their preferred candidate several times.


Representing over 60,000 workers and 150,000 family members, the Culinary Union is the largest in Nevada, and strongly advocates for their rights in education, housing and welfare. The union not only negotiates labour contracts but also has considerable political power in endorsing candidates or bills that support labour rights and economic justice. 

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