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"They made me look better than I am and sound better than I do," Leno said in a somewhat strained voice. He was referring to his unionized audio and visual production staffs' abilities as part of his success.

I'm proud to say this is a union show, and I have never worked with a more professional group of people in my life. They get paid good money and they do a good job. And when the guys and women on this show would show me the new car they bought or the house up the street that one of the guys got, I felt I played a role in their success as they played in mine. That was just a great feeling.

That wasn't the first time Leno showed labor union solidarity. In 2000, he was to appear at the Society of Human Resource Management convention in Vegas. Then he learned that one of the most notorious union-busting law firms in the country--Jackson, Lewis--was getting big bucks to do two "How to Stay Union-Free" seminars at the conference. That did it for him: he would cancel his gig at the SHRM symposium unless Jackson/Lewis got booted. Rather than lose Leno, the hosts promptly removed both union-busting presentations, despite the fact that SHRM's chairman, Michael Lotito, was a partner at Jackson, Lewis.

Leno's own union, the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, wasn't surprised at all, saying he had always been a "stand-up guy" on union issues.
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