They came in buses to Philadelphia, proudly wearing the t-shirts of their unions.
By mid-day Saturday, organizers of a national AFL-CIO rally claimed more than 35,000 attended, exceeding expectations. Police did not provide crowd estimates.
Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a Florida congresswoman took to the podium in the minutes following Mitt Romney's selection of Paul Ryan as his vice president.
When she mentioned Ryan, the crowd booed loudly. When they finished, she said, "I couldn't agree more. What a devastating impact a Romney-Ryan ticket would have on working families.
She added, "A child needs an education more than a million needs a tax break," she said to cheers from the crowd.