Acting U.A.W. President Vows Corruption Fight as Feds Probe Union
DETROIT (AP) — The acting president of the United Auto Workers said Wednesday that a corruption scandal plaguing the union will get worse before it gets better, but he’s confident he can fix the mess and turn over a clean house to the next leader.
Rory Gamble, a union vice president who successfully negotiated a tentative contract with Ford, took over as acting president Saturday when President Gary Jones took a paid leave of absence.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Gamble pledged to put financial controls in place to stop the bribery and embezzlement uncovered in a widening federal investigation.
“We’re going to plan for going forward and how we fix this great union,” Gamble said. “Right now, that’s my charge and what I came to this job to do, to make sure I hand to the next president a very clean and uncorrupted union.”
Gamble, a former director of a union region based in Detroit, has a tough job to do.
Earlier Wednesday, a retired union vice president became the 13th person to be charged in the federal probe of the union and auto companies.
Joe Ashton is accused of receiving thousands of dollars in kickbacks from a contractor who made watches for union members. The 58,000 watches are still in storage five years later.