Card Check: The Vote Nears, Contact Your Senator

By June 18, 2007Labor Unions

As of 5 p.m. today, Majority Leader Reid has yet to file a motion to proceed on H.R. 800, the euphonized Employee Free Choice Act, which means that the cloture vote is likely to occur on Thursday. (They’re voting on the House version, not the Senate’s, for reasons of procedural ease.) By most accounts, debate will be kept short since the outcome is all but certain — the failure to gain the 60 votes needed to invoke cloture.

That’s good on one hand, because the bill dies this session. It doesn’t have to go to the President for his veto.

But it’s bad, because a few Senators may justify a yea vote with the traditional excuse, “Well, no big deal, it’s not going to pass anyway.” Even so, once lawmakers go on the record with a yes vote, it’s harder to change their minds in future years; labor’s strategy is a multiyear one based on maintaining Democratic, pro-union majorities in both chambers and electing a Democratic president in 2008.

So complacency is the enemy, right? Therefore ….to urge your Senator to oppose this assault on the secret ballot, please click here.

Other news and commentary:

  • John Fund hits the top reasons for fighting this bill in today’s Wall Street Journal here. Excerpt:
    Unions have a right to participate vigorously in the democratic process, and they take full advantage of it. That’s why it is so jarring to see them support a measure that tampers with the sacred right to use a secret ballot when deciding something as critical as who will speak for people in the workplace.
  • AFSCME’s legislative conference is under way in town here. Funny how big labor votes are scheduled to coincide with big labor gatherings. (Hey, North Dakota-based national radio gasbag and opponent of the secret ballot Ed Schultz will be broadcasting live at AFSCME! There’s been almost no coverage of the issue back in the Flickertail State. Glad Ed is on hand to provide both sides of the issue…snort.)
  • The NAM’s Jason Straczewski was on CNBC’s Morning Call this morning, refuting the arguments of Mary Beth Maxwell of American Rights at Work. The video is here.
  • On CNBC, Maxwell offers the standard union talking point: Forced unionization will help expand the middle class. The Hudson Institute’s Diana Furchtgott-Roth takes on that magical thinking in this column.
    [Allowing] unions to organize workplaces through intimidation could hurt the middle class, rather than help it, as negotiated compensation packages force firms to close or relocate offshore. The heavily unionized rustbelt has been shedding jobs. And the greatest job growth in the country has been in the non-unionized areas of the South, where plants such as South Carolina’s BMW and Tennessee’s Nissan are adding employment.
  • Check back here this week for more on card-check’s Senate fate. More blogging coverage is also available at, EFCA Updates, and The Union-Free Employer.

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