Key Nevada union backs Obama in blow to Clinton
By Adam Tanner
LAS VEGAS (Reuters) - Barack Obama rebounded from a close loss to Hillary Clinton and won the support of the heavily Hispanic union representing Las Vegas casino workers on Wednesday ahead of the next Democratic presidential contest.
The Obama endorsement by the Culinary Workers Union, whose 60,000 members service the famed hotels and casinos on the Las Vegas strip and is a major political force in Nevada, was a blow to Clinton, who had campaigned for its backing in the state's January 19 contest.
"We had a wonderful dilemma," D. Taylor, the union's secretary treasurer, told a noisy news conference. "It's been a very difficult decision."
"We understand we are going against the Democratic power establishment ... we are used to being underdogs," he added.
Clinton, the New York senator aiming to become the first woman president in the November election, had led in polls in Nevada and courted the union and Hispanics, which make up 45 percent of the union's membership.
The group's parent organization, UNITE HERE, with 460,000 food service, gaming and other workers nationwide, also expressed support for Obama, the Illinois senator who is hoping to become America's first black president.