GARY — The United Steelworkers union, representing 23,000 members in Indiana, on Monday endorsed Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Baron Hill in his race against Republican Todd Young at a rally at Local 1066 headquarters.

Mike Millsap, USW District 7 director, spoke at the rally, saying he believes Hill will bring change to Indiana for the benefit of the middle class and children.

“Baron Hill understands that if we are going to have a middle class then we need good-paying manufacturing jobs,” Millsap said. “Hoosier children’s education is our priority. Baron Hill understands that, and wants to make Indiana education second to none.”

Hill stood before a large "Fight Back" banner and told the assembled steelworkers his big three objectives are to create more jobs with higher wages to build back the middle class, bettering the schools while making them more affordable, and strengthening social security and Medicare.

“We’re not going to build a middle class without strong labor unions,” Hill said. “They have been diminished by politicians who, quite frankly, don’t know what they’re doing.”

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Hill said he believes that Indiana steel needs to be built back up in order to have a sustainable middle class.

“For too long, steelworkers have been getting the shaft,” Hill said. “Friends of mine like Pete Visclosky and Joe Donnelly are doing their damnedest to protect your jobs; they just need a friend to help, and I am that man.”

Hill accuses Young, who like him represents Indiana in the U.S. House, of favoring the outsourcing of jobs overseas.

Also in attendance was State Sen. Lonnie Randolph, D-East Chicago, who believes that Hill is good for Indiana steelworkers and Indiana as a whole.

“Baron Hill is good not just for Lake County, but all of Indiana,” Randolph said. “In 1906, Northwest Indiana carried the whole state with the steel industry. We seem to have forgotten that, but Baron understands that. We are the heart of the steel industry, and we need to protect that.”