Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

Environmentalists, Unions, and Trial Lawyers, Oh My!

In a winners-and-losers story this morning, the Politico reports that unions have been the winners in the new Congress (guess what that means for actual working Americans):

The Employee Free Choice Act, nicknamed the card-check bill, passed the House and was blocked in the Senate.

Unions didn’t expect the legislation to pass but wanted a vote to help them better target their election work.

Lawmakers who voted against the bill, requiring companies to recognize unions if a majority of employees sign cards, can expect their vote to haunt them next year.

“In the Senate, we would like to see a greater focus on the differences between the parties,” said Bill Samuel, legislative director of the AFL-CIO. “One way to highlight those differences is to force Republicans to filibuster bills.”

Labor also managed to push the issue of taxation of private equity onto the agenda and the front pages.

UPDATE: And this, from Rep. Buck McKeon:

Adding insult to injury, Democrats have unleashed an all-out assault on democracy in the workplace with their deceptively named “Employee Free Choice Act.”  The reality of this union power-grab is a system in which workers are stripped of the right to a secret-ballot unionizing election, instead subjected to strong-arm tactics and possible union intimidation.

Another cleverly titled bill, the so-called “RESPECT Act,” redefines the classification of a supervisor under the National Labor Relations Act in a transparent attempt to inflate the number of dues-paying union members.

The icing on the bureaucratic cake, however, is the Democrats’ aggressive expansion of the Depression-era Davis-Bacon wage mandates. In one bill after another, Democrats have imposed or expanded the reach of Davis-Bacon “prevailing wage” mandates, which use flawed calculations to impose a bureaucratic wage system on federal contracts.  By inflating labor rates, Davis-Bacon wages increase the costs of federal projects by as much as 15 percent – costs which get passed on to the taxpayers – and force private companies to do hundreds of millions of dollars of excess administrative work each year. 

Categories: Center for Union FactsEnding Secret Ballots