In the anxious days leading up to the Dec. 6 Senate runoff between Raphael Warnock and Herschel Walker, five members of IBEW 11’s Organizing Dept. flew to Georgia and braved the cold to do their part for history.
The five staffers, dubbed the Warnock 5, included Lali Castillo, Ruben Mendoza, Tommy Zielomski, Chris Longoria and Beto Gonzalez. They knocked on over 250 doors, talking to voters about what was at stake in this tight runoff.
“We covered a lot of ground in a week,” said Castillo. “Everyone we spoke to was so excited about the election. They were all appreciative we had come all the way from California to help ensure that Warnock won the runoff.”
Georgia is very different from Los Angeles, Castillo noted with a laugh. “I’ve done canvassing here in LA, and it was nothing like that. Georgia is a right-to-work state. It’s also an open carry state – meaning you can carry guns in public. We’re just not used to seeing guns in public like that.”
The group decided to stay an extra day to watch the election results with the hundreds of other union members who had come from all over the country to help out with GOTV. “When Warnock finally won, we were all so pumped up. It was such a roller coaster ride to watch the count. But when the final numbers came in, it made it all worthwhile.”
“Local 11 always shows up,” Castillo said proudly.