We sat up and took notice today when an e-mail came across our desk with the above title in the subject line. A new entrant in the Majority Leader’s race? And he’s declaring victory? What’s going on? (Sheez, next thing you know, someboyd’s gonna tell us that Harry Belafonte is an international statesman…)
And so we read on:
“A spokesman for Rep. Charlie Norwood [R-GA} indicated Monday that his boss…officially locked up enough votes to claim victory in the race to become the next House Majority Leader.”
Then the punch line:
“In collecting over 117 authorization cards declaring Members’ support, I was able to…win the day.” The final paragraph notes that “Norwood plans to bring the signed authorization cards to the Republican Steering Committee for certification when Congress reconvenes.”
See, Rep. Norwood, is the sponsor of H.R. 874, the Secret Ballot Protection Act. It would require secret ballot union elections. As it stands today, in some circumstances, the union can gain recognition simply by collecting a majority of authorization cards — cards that are signed by employees saying they want the union or that they want an election. So what’s wrong with that? Well, it may surprise you to know that there’s often not a little coercion involved in collecting these cards. A few union supporters can confront any employee and (what’s a nice word for coerce?) them to sign the card. It’s face-to-face, nothing secret about it. It can be very intimidating. And, it’s about the only way they win elections these days, if you can call that “winning.”
So what Rep. Norwood is trying to do it to make sure that every union election would be governed by a secret ballot. Makes sense, seein’s how we live here in America, the Cradle of Democracy. All in favor of demcoracy, raise your hand. The union folks, for their part, favor coercion. They kinda like coercion. Works for them. All in favor of coercion, well, nevermind.
Bravo to Charlie Norwood and his great staff for finding a great and timely way to make their point. Here’s a link to his press release and “Dear Colleague” letter from today.
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