Card Check: ‘I Think I Can, I Think I Can.” Or Maybe Not…

By July 29, 2009Labor Unions

So, just a day after Roll Call reported that Majority Leader Harry Reid planned to “railroad” a version of the Employee Free Choice Act through the Senate, we have Congress Daily reporting the legislation is on hold, maybe through this entire session.

Senate efforts to compromise on a watered-down version of the Employee Free Choice Act have been put firmly on the chamber’s back burner — perhaps for the rest of the year — as senators, aides and lobbyists focus on health care and other legislation, participants said.
“We’re not doing anything right now,” Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, said of talks he has led among a group of Democrats since it became clear in late March that a more ambitious “card check” bill to help unions organize could not win 60 Senate votes.

So we have a “compromise” that’s not a compromise being rammed through one moment being returned to the back burner, but then heated up and shoved down Senators’ throats, depending on whether the playing field is level or not.

Depends on which gandydancer you’re talking to. Metaphorically speaking.

We tend to take this latest account seriously because the reporter spoke to Senator Harkin on the record and doesn’t seem to have been spun by labor sources. And if Senator Harkin wants to attribute the inaction on this ABSOLUTE MAJOR PRIORITY to the heavy schedule of other economic legislation, that’s fine.

But we’ll be watching the signals and listening for the blast of a railroad torpedo just in case.


And finally…

This is the July 16 NYT article that prompted so much reporting and commentary and blogging and speculation about the “card check” provisions being dropped. Just interesting to reread two weeks later.

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