Freedom Foundation

Trump First Post-Presidential Act? Opting Out of His Union

There seems to be little consensus about what Donald Trump accomplished during his four years as president, but no one can quibble with his first official act as a private citizen.

He opted out of his union.

According to a story on the Fox News website, the ex-president terminated his longstanding membership in the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) after the union threatened to expel him in the wake of his handling of the mob takeover of the Capitol Building in January.

Trump called SAG’s ploy a “blatant attempt at free media attention to distract from your dismal record as a union. Your organization has done little for its members, and nothing for me — besides collecting dues and promoting dangerous un-American policies and ideas — as evident by your massive unemployment rates and lawsuits from celebrated actors, who even recorded a video asking, ‘Why isn’t the union fighting for me?’ ”

Trump was referring to a video posted last year by actors like Mark Hammill, Whoopi Goldberg and Morgan Freeman, among others, who slammed the union’s health plan benefit cuts. In the video, Goldberg asks: “Why isn’t the union fighting for me?”

Meanwhile, the former president slammed SAG for its “policy failures,” and further said its “disciplinary failures are even more egregious.”

“I no longer wish to be associated with your union,” Trump wrote. “As such, this letter is to inform you of my immediate resigning from SAG-AFTRA.”

He added, “You have done nothing for me.”

Although SAG is a private-sector union representing motion picture and television performers, his letter of resignation could serve as a template for government employees struggling to opt out of SEIU, AFSCME, the Teamsters or any of countless teachers’ unions.

“Why isn’t the union fighting for me?” Because you — and millions like you — have spent years looking the other way while a greedy, politically motivated special interest picked your pocket “for your own good.”

But the jig is up. A series of U.S. Supreme Court rulings have made it easier for government employees to opt out, and thousands more are walking out every month.

President Trump is no longer a public employee, but his actions set a great example for millions who still are.