Card Check: The System is Biased in Favor of the Unions

More responses to the Washington Post’s editorial criticism of the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace and the NAM and Chamber for refusing to “compromise” on the Employee Free Choice Act.

From James Sherk, Heritage Foundation, in today’s Foundry blog, “What Employer Advantage?”:

[As] I have written before, labor law heavily tilts the scales in favor of unions during organizing drives:

  • Unions control the election timing, so workers do not vote until union support peaks.
  • Employers rarely learn of the organizing drive until unions ask for an election, so unions have months to build support while employers have just one month to present the other side.
  • Employers may not ask employees if they support the union. Unions may ask employees how they will vote and focus their efforts on persuading undecided workers.
  • The law severely restricts employer speech while allowing unions to say almost anything they want. Employers may not promise to improve working conditions if workers vote down the union. The union may promise anything it wants, even if it knows it cannot keep those promises.
  • Employers may not even ask workers what problems they have in the workplace and why they want a union. Unions can ask workers about anything they want.
  • Unions may not campaign while workers are on company property and on company time. However the company must give unions the addresses of every worker and unions can visit workers at their homes. Employers are legally prohibited from visiting workers homes to campaign.

And from Peter Kirsanow, former NLRB member, “EFCA Compromise Nonsense“:

First, the idea that the EFCA amendments presently being floated constitute a “compromise” is a peculiar usage of the term. As the editorial itself notes, EFCA opponents remain monolithically opposed to any form of the bill. The “compromise” is merely a recognition among Democrats that they can’t muster the needed support for EFCA from within even their own ranks.

Second, the allegedly “unfair barriers” to unionization that the WaPo laments were in place 50 years ago when unions represented 35% of the private-sector workforce. They were in place 30 years ago when 24% of the workforce was unionized. And they’re essentially the same today when only 7.5% of the workforce is unionized. Did the WaPo run an editorial decrying the unfairness of the system when unions were in ascendance?

The Post started its editorial with a plea that it be heard on the issue because the paper had been critical of the labor movement in the past. When you lead off with a “we have, we hope, some standing,” that’s a pretty clear signal of a weak argument to follow.  Who cares what standing you have? The issue of any editorial is whether you make your case.

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