Teamsters International President James Hoffa was in Toledo on Wednesday headlining a rally urging voters to vote no on Issue 2, the referendum on the November ballot over the new law that restricts the collective bargaining rights of public employees.
"They say the whole world is watching," says Hoffa. "America is watching Ohio. Between now and November 8th we've got to send a message. This is our time. This is our time for workers to stand up."
Hoffa told union members at the Teamsters Local 20 hall that they are fighting back against a war on workers. He had some strong words for Republican Governor John Kasich.
"Governor Kasich, we've got a big truck out there and now we're going to run you over!" says Hoffa.
Supporters of Issue 2 and Ohio's new collective bargaining law say these are reasonable reforms asked of government employees. They maintain that without Issue 2, communities will continue to lay off police officers and firefighters because they can't afford to pay them.
But opponents say they're worried about losing their voice and their ability to negotiate.
Lt. Dan Brown-Martinez is a Toledo firefighter and paramedic. He says his number once concern is maintaining a minimum staffing level.
"I want to come home in the morning to my family," says Lt. Brown-Martinez. "I want to see the citizens of Toledo, which are my family members and friends, get what they pay for and have their tax dollars work hardest for them, and we know how to do that."
Many people in the crowd left the union hall fired up to get out the vote.
"It's grand. Grand that we can all stick together," says Minnie Warner, a retired Teamster. "That's what we all need to do, we need to stick together."