President Obama’s nomination Monday of Daniel R. Elliott III to chair the Surface Transportation Board is another potential political coup for the United Transportation Union. Elliott, currently UTU associate general counsel, follows the appointment of UTU Illinois State Legislative Director Joe Szabo as head of the Federal Railroad Administration.
For its part, UTU is hoping that, assuming Elliott is confirmed by the Senate, the twin choices will be followed by others from UTU in the future.
"The selection by President Obama of Dan Elliott and Joe Szabo to head major transportation regulatory agencies is tribute to the political influence of the UTU, which flows from the UTU PAC," said UTU International President Mike Futhey in a statement. "We have good reason to expect President Obama to reach into the UTU ranks for other appointments in the near future."
Elliott, a Democrat, would join fellow Democrat Frank Mulvey and Republican Charles Nottingham on the three-member board.