By: Trevor Loudon
A long-time union activist, Tarlau – a Metro Washington Council Executive Board member – was endorsed by the Maryland State and DC AFL-CIO at its annual convention in October of 2013.
Tarlau is heavily involved in “progressive” politics and serves on the board of the influential Progressive Maryland.
He also works closely with the socialist led Progressive Democrats of America and is a mover in Maryland and DC Democratic politics, where he works closely with local far left Democrats such as Rep. Donna Edwards.
Tarlau has always been a “progressive,” but not always a Democrat.
Jimmy Tarlau arrived at Princeton in the mid-1960s with the goal of radicalizing the University. Working for ultra-left New York Congressman William Fitts Ryan ’44 during the summer after his freshman year, he “quietly researched” the Institute for Defense Analysis, which was located in Princeton and would become the target of many protests by the Marxist led antiwar group Students for a Democratic Society.
Is “quietly researched” a euphemism for spying on a military contractor helping the US war effort against the North Vietnamese communist enemy?
Tarlau later was one of three students suspended from Princeton for participating in the “Hickel Heckle” — in which radical students harassed Walter J. Hickel, President Nixon’s Secretary of the Interior, when he came to speak on campus. The outburst cost Tarlau the right to graduate with his class.
By the time Jimmy Tarlau received his Princeton diploma in the mail, he was working in a truck factory, “building both trucks and a more radical consciousness among his fellow workers.”
Tarlau went on the join the Communist Party USA‘s youth wing, the Young Workers Liberation League and on June 1, 1975, Jimmy Tarlau was elected both to the District Board and as a member of the District Committee of the Pennsylvania Communist Party at the Party’s District Convention.
While Tarlau could have made it in mainstream politics, he doesn’t regret his radical path:
I sometimes wonder whether I could have been a big shot. On the other hand, when I look in the mirror and say, ‘How do you actually change this country,’ that’s not how you change the country. … Basically, it’s union organizations that elect progressive candidates and also push candidates to take better positions.”
Let’s just hope enough Marylanders wake up to Jimmy Tarlau to keep him off the public payroll.