INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Chuck Jones, president of the union representing Carrier workers, received a call from Bernie Sanders late Thursday afternoon after the union leader was called out by President-elect Donald Trump Wednesday night.
Trump tweeted “Chuck Jones, who is President of United Steelworkers 1999, has done a terrible job representing workers. No wonder companies flee country!”
He continued, “If United Steelworkers 1999 was any good, they would have kept those jobs in Indiana. Spend more time working-less time talking. Reduce dues.”
"Very unprofessional but I give him credit. He got some spunk to him so it didn't overly upset me. If anything I thought it was pretty amusing," Jones said.
Following the tweets Jones says he received harmful threats against his home and family. But others stepped up to show their support.
CBS4 was with Jones when he spoke with Sanders, whom Jones said he supported during the election. During the call, the Vermont senator vowed to fight and hold the President-elect to his promises of stopping corporations from moving jobs out of the country.
Sanders tweeted after speaking with Jones, stating "Mr. Trump should not be attacking strong and effective union leaders like Chuck Jones."
Jones said he received threats after running afoul of Trump, who criticized Jones' job of representing union workers.
Within 30 minutes of the tweet, Jones said his phone “blew up” and wouldn’t stop ringing. He said people told him they knew he had children and what kind of car he drives. They called him all manner of bad names, Jones told the Washington Post.
“It is what it is, but it’s not a major deal. I’m not concerned about it,” he said. “People’s got frustrations because I said something about President-elect Trump, and they’re blaming it on me. And that’s fine.”
Jones irked Trump when he said the president-elect misled people by boasting that he’d saved 1,100 jobs in Indiana from moving to Mexico. Jones put the number closer to 730 jobs, saying some of the positions Trump claimed he saved weren’t going anywhere in the first place.
Jones reiterated that he’s grateful that hundreds of Hoosiers will not lose their jobs. He noted that many workers will be laid off after believing their jobs had been saved. About 600 layoffs are expected next year as positions transition to Mexico.
Jones told CBS4 on Thursday he has no hard feelings toward Trump and would still like to work with the upcoming administration to keep more jobs in Indiana.
Trump and Vice President-elect Gov. Mike Pence announced on Dec. 1 that they’d made a deal to save the jobs at Carrier.
A movement has started on social media to show support for Jones with #ImWithChuck. United Steelworkers tweeted their support for him:
The Indiana Democratic Party also showed its support for Jones, with Chairman John Zody releasing a statement:
“Since last February, Chuck Jones has been on the front lines looking for every opportunity to stop 1,400 Hoosiers jobs from going to Mexico. And though workers were not brought to the table during the deal announced last week, Chuck and so many others in the labor movement have gone to great lengths to keep these jobs – all of them – in Indiana because they work for workers every single day. President-elect Trump’s criticism of Chuck’s efforts are completely out of line, and what’s more – Mike Pence has been completely silent while a fellow Hoosier gets attacked. We should expect more– but it appears Gov. Pence will disappoint us again. I join others in gladly saying that #ImWithChuck and what he does to keep people working in Indiana."