Card Check: Lying Through Ellipses and Expensive Ads

By March 26, 2009General

The labor front group, American Rights at Work, has joined the SEIU, the House Ed & Labor Committee, and the lefty activists at Think Progress in a dishonest and cynical distortion of the Wall Street Journal’s opposition to the Employee Free Choice Act.

ARAW does so by lying through omission in a half-page ad in today’s Washington Post:

Again, here’s what the Wall Street Journal said in its March 20th editorial, “Unionize or Die“:

The bill doesn’t remove the secret-ballot option from the National Labor Relations Act but in practice makes it a dead letter.

ARAW’s ad drops the essential last-half of the sentence.

If a political candidate misquoted his opponent so blatantly in order to completely reverse his meaning, the media would jump all over him. Stories would carry quotes from campaign consultants who would say, “Wow. They must be really be desperate to lie so obviously.” Granted, distortion is the coin of labor’s rhetorical realm, but this is really something.

Why be so obvious? Organized labor knows the elimination of the secret ballot is the most powerful argument against the Employee Free Choice Act, and since most of the public is still not familiar with the issue, it’s important to continue claiming that secret-ballot elections are still possible. Even when they’re not.

American Rights at Work considered it worth spending $12,000 or so of union members’ forced dues to promote the lie through a half-page Washington Post ad.

But timing worked against the union activists this week. Given the usual minium three-day lead time for print ads, we suspect ARAW contracted for this placement before Senator Specter announced he would oppose cloture on the Employee Free Choice Act. The Senator’s statement changed the political dynamic in Congress, and the smart unions are no doubt rethinking their messaging. In the meantime, ARAW got stuck peddling the same old claptrap.

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