The opinion of the court was delivered by: Edelstein, District Judge:
This opinion emanates from the voluntary settlement in the
action commenced by plaintiff United States of America (the
"Government") against the defendants International Brotherhood
of Teamsters (the "IBT") and the IBT's General Executive Board
(the "GEB"). The settlement is embodied in the voluntary
consent order entered March 14, 1989 (the "Consent Decree").
The remedial provisions in the Consent Decree provided for
three Court-appointed officials, the Independent Administrator
to oversee its provisions, an Investigations Officer to bring
charges against corrupt IBT members, and an Election Officer to
oversee the electoral process leading up to and including the
1991 election for International Officers (collectively, the
"Court Officers"). The goal of the Consent Decree is to rid the
IBT of the hideous influence of organized crime through the
election and prosecution provisions.
Application X by the Independent Administrator presents for
this Court's review the final set of election rules for the
1991 IBT election for International Officers. During the course
of the implementation of this Consent Decree, this Court has
been called upon to decide matters large and small. But of all
the tasks put before it, no question is more central to the
ultimate success of this Consent Decree than this proposed
framework for the first fully democratic, secret ballot
elections in the history of a union which has been the historic
marionette of organized crime. An election under these rules
beacon the coming of the light of freedom to this dark union.
These election rules must not be viewed in a vacuum, but
instead placed in their proper context. This Court has
reiterated that this Consent Decree is a unique attempt to
cleanse this union. These election rules are the linchpin in
that effort. This Court will only approve election rules that
will guarantee honest, fair, and free elections completely
secure from harassment, intimidation, coercion, hooliganism,
threats, or any variant of these no matter under what guise.
Before examining the election rules and objections to them in
detail, this Court must emphasize that its notion of fair, free
and honest elections means more than just an honest ballot.
Fair elections demand that IBT members are given a meaningful
uncoerced choice of candidates. Candidates must be freed of any
hesitation about speaking openly on issues, including criticism
of the incumbent IBT structure. Candidates must be fearlessly
free to communicate those views to the membership. Members must
be assured and given confidence that they need not fear to
engage in untrammelled discussion.
I. The Rules Promulgation Process
The election rules submitted to this Court were promulgated
by the Election Officer pursuant to ¶ F.12.(D) of the Consent
Decree, which authorizes the Election Officer to supervise all
phases of the 1991 Election for International Officers. See
Consent Decree, ¶ F.12.D at 15; see also United States v.
International Brotherhood of Teamsters, 723 F. Supp. 203, 206-07
(S.D.N.Y. 1989) (the "October 18, 1989 Decision") appeal
dismissed (unpublished order, 2d Cir. Dec. 13, 1989), petition
for rehearing en banc denied, (unpublished order, 2d Cir. Feb.
12, 1990), cert. denied (June 11, 1990).
The October 18, 1989 Order of this Court established that the
parties intended the Election Officer to have broad power
actively to supervise the entire 1991 election for
International Officers. The promulgation of electoral rules is
an integral part of that mandate. The October 18, 1989 Order
also authorized the Election Officer to follow a timetable for
the 1991 election. Application X presenting these electoral
rules comports with the schedule for these events. See id.
The Election Officer followed the notice and comment
rulemaking process to promulgate these final election rules.
The Election Officer drafted a set of proposed electoral rules,
(the "proposed election rules") and distributed these to all
IBT entities on February 22, 1990. The Election Officer then
held a series of eight hearings from March 6 through March 27
around the United States and Canada to solicit comments from
all interested entities about the proposed election rules.*fn1
The transcripts of these hearings are part of Application X and
public record filed with the Court. The Election Officer then
considered the comments from the hearings in addition to
submitted written commentary in promulgating the final rules.
These final rules are the substance of Application X. In
addition the Election Officer has released commentaries as a
companion to the final election rules, (the "election rules
commentaries"). The election rules commentaries further
demonstrate the comprehensiveness of the Election Officer's
The Court is satisfied that the Election Officer proceeded in
a methodological way such that the IBT membership and
subordinate entities were afforded an ample opportunity to
participate, comment, and make their input part of the public
record of these final election rules.
II. Objections to the Final Rules
The IBT again reiterates its position that the Election
Officer has no specific authority under the Consent Decree to
promulgate election rules. The IBT conceded in a footnote that
these same arguments were rejected by this Court's decision of
Application II. See October 18, 1989 Opinion, supra, 723
F. Supp. at 206-07, appeal dismissed (unpublished order, 2d Cir.
Dec. 13, 1989), petition for rehearing en banc denied,
(unpublished order, 2d Cir. Feb. 12, 1990), cert. denied (June
11, 1990). The IBT's asking this Court to revisit this final
ruling is frivolous. My decision stands.
Locals 282 and 707 assert that as locals they are not bound
by the Consent Decree's changes to the IBT constitution. This
Court has already set out in detail its reasoning on the
binding effect of the Consent Decree. See January 17, 1990
Opinion and Order of this Court, (the "All Writs Act Opinion"),
728 F. Supp. 1032, 1048-57 (S.D.N.Y. 1990), aff'd 907 F.2d 277
(2d Cir. 1990). That specific reasoning is incorporated into
this order by reference. This Court now specifically orders
that the local unions are bound by the election provisions of
the Consent Decree.
Challenges to particular election rules will be considered
1. Article II, § 1 of the Final Election
The IBT protests that this rule — which sets a formula for
the number of alternate delegates that each local union must
elect — is at odds with Article III, § 5(a)(2) of the IBT
Constitution. In their objections to this rule the IBT ignores
the underlying problem which Article II, § 1 of the final
election rules corrects. The Consent Decree prohibits delegates
from participating at the international convention unless
directly elected. Without this rule, those locals that do not
elect alternate delegates would be disenfranchised should some
elected delegates be unable to attend the international
convention. In addition, those locals whose relative delegate
strength increased between the local delegate election and the
international convention will have a reservoir from which to
draw alternate delegates.
2. Article II, § 2 of the Final Election Rules
The IBT challenges the provision at Article II, § 2 of the
final election rules — requiring each local to submit a local
union plan to the Election Officer — as beyond the scope of
the Consent Decree. The local union plan must detail for the
Election Officer that local's specific procedure for the
The final election rule's requirement of a local union plan
falls within the authority of the Election Officer to supervise
this election. The Election Officer cannot supervise this
election without the specific information contained in a local
The IBT further objects to the Election Officer's intention
to conduct all phases of the election of any local which does
not submit a local union plan. The IBT again argues such a rule
goes beyond the scope of the Consent Decree. The Election
Officer contends that he must certify the result of each
election. Should a local not submit a local union plan, he is
left with two choices: either conduct that local's election, or
refuse to certify that local's election, thereby
disenfranchising the membership of that local.
An intent of the election provisions of the Consent Decree is
to give the IBT membership a real and honest voice through
direct elections. A course of action which would disenfranchise
any portion of the membership is intolerable. The Election
Officer's intention to conduct the election of any local which
refuses to submit a local union plan falls within his authority
to supervise this election.
Accordingly, the IBT's challenges to this rule are hereby
3. Article III; Article VIII, § 9; Definitions,
¶ 2 of the Final Election Rules
The IBT disputes the provisions of the final election rules
which provide that accredited candidates for union office may
have their campaign literature published in the
International Teamster. The standards for candidate
accreditation are delineated at Article III of the final
election rules. A candidate may become accredited under Article
III of the final election rules principally by obtaining
signatures from 2.5% of the "membership of the relevant
membership pool." Article III, § 1, Final Election Rules at 23.
Accredited candidates and those nominated for international
office may have their "campaign literature published in the IBT
Magazine" as set out in Article VII, § 9 of the final election
rules. The IBT argues that the accreditation of candidates
itself goes beyond the scope of the Consent Decree.
The IBT further contends that publication of accredited
candidate literature in the International Teamster exceeds the
Election Officer's power "to distribute materials about the
election to the IBT membership." ¶ F.12.(D), Consent Decree at
15. The IBT asserts that the Consent Decree specifically
enumerates when the Court Officers may publish material in the
International Teamster, and ¶ F.12.(D) does not explicitly
grant the Election Officer such a right. The IBT points out
that ¶ F.12.(E) expressly provided that the Independent
Administrator should report to the membership in each issue of
the International Teamster.
The IBT's argument that these publication rules violate the
IBT's right of free speech by compelling that organization to
publish certain speech in the International Teamster is
similarly unconvincing. While labor unions are not ordinarily
required to publish "contrary views," Camarata v. International
Bhd. of Teamsters, 478 F. Supp. 321, 330 (D.D.C. 1979), aff'd
108 L.R.R.M. (BNA) 2924 (D.C. Cir. 1981), this election is no
ordinary circumstance. Its circumstances require special
measures. This Court has previously found that implementing the
remedial scheme embodied in the Consent Decree is an
extraordinary circumstance requiring "special consideration."
All Writs Act Opinion, supra, 728 F. Supp. at 1045. The more
general authority cited by IBT, e.g., Wooley v. Maynard
430 U.S. 705, 714, 97 S.Ct. 1428, 1435, 51 L.Ed.2d 752 (1977);
Pacific Gas & Electric Co. v. Public Utilities Comm'n of
California, 475 U.S. 1, 106 S.Ct. 903, 89 L.Ed.2d 1 (1986);
Miami Herald Publishing Co. v. Tornillo, 418 U.S. 241, 94 S.Ct.
2831, 41 L.Ed.2d 730 (1974) is therefore inapposite.
This Court is not prohibited from ordering that the
International Teamster be open to campaign material under
special circumstances. In the past, a court ordered such
publication in the 1972 election for president of the United
Mine Workers union. See Hodgson v. United Mine Workers of
America, 344 F. Supp. 17, 36 (D.D.C. 1972).
The IBT relies on the Camarata decision to argue that a court
cannot compel a union to publish campaign material in a union
publication under any circumstances. But that conclusion is
misplaced, since the Camarata court determined only that the
situation it faced presented an inappropriate circumstance to
compel such publication. In Camarata, the court found that the
plaintiff had announced his candidacy for IBT General President
solely to "gain access to the I.T. [International Teamster]."
Camarata, supra, 478 F. Supp. at 329. No such circumstance
It should not be forgotten that the IBT has bitterly opposed
the inclusion of any material arising from the Consent Decree
in the International Teamster. The IBT objected to monthly
reports of the Independent Administrator in the International
Teamster, and this Court enforced the Independent
Administrator's rights to a monthly forum. Contest over that
right prompted Application VI by the Independent Administrator,
and this Court's decision in a Memorandum & Order dated
November 16, 1989 (the "November 16 Memorandum"), appeal
dismissed (unpublished order, 2d Cir. Dec. 13, 1989), that the
Independent Administrator has a right to report monthly to the
membership in the International Teamster.
This Court has continually recognized that the dissemination
of information benefits the IBT membership, which has a right
and need to know about these matters that affect their union.
No opposition candidate may mount a viable challenge to the
entrenched IBT plutocracy without standing on an equal footing
with regard to distribution of their views.
The standards delineated in Article III of the final election
rules governing the accreditation process regarding which
candidates may become accredited are fair and uniform. The
intention of the Election Officer to publish campaign
statements of accredited candidates in the International
Teamster pursuant to Article VII, § 9 of the final ...