Esai Morales Backed by Fellow Candidate for SAG-AFTRA President

Edney says Morales has 'better chance' of winning

Esai Morales has received an endorsement for the SAG-AFTRA presidency from Paul Edney, who’s also on the ballot for the slot.

Current SAG-AFTRA co-president Ken Howard and background actor Marilyn Monrovia are also seeking the presidency. The union unveiled the official candidates list late Friday.

Edney released a statement disclosing the endorsement on his site at

“Although I have spent a lot of time, effort and money on my campaign to be on the ballot for the National President of SAG-AFTRA, I realize that Esai Morales stands a much better chance than me of winning,” he said. “I don’t wish to split the vote, and since we see eye-to-eye on just about everything that needs to be done for our union, especially background, I have decided to endorse Esai Morales wholeheartedly.”

Edney also endorsed secretary-treasurer candidate Jane Austin, Morales’ running mate on the Membership First slate.

SEE ALSO: SAG-AFTRA Announces Candidates for First Election

Membership First’s slate is running on a platform asserting that the current leaders are out of touch with members and have given too much power to the union’s executives.  Howard, elected in 2009 as the 25th and final president of SAG shortly after winning an Emmy for “Grey Gardens,” was a strong advocate for merger and has portrayed himself as a pragmatist.

Ballots go out Tuesday with an Aug. 15 deadline. It’s the first election for SAG-AFTRA, which reps about 160,000 performers, since members approved the merger of SAG and AFTRA in March, 2012.

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