Archive for the ‘Employee Free Choice Act’ Category

Card Check May Fail; Lawmakers Vote In Public View

March 10, 2009

Democrats on Tuesday introduced controversial labor legislation making it easier for workers to organize, formally kicking off the biggest lobbying fight between business and labor in decades.

The Hill

The Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), also known as card-check, was introduced with 223 co-sponsors in the House and 40 in the Senate. That is less support than it attracted in the last Congress, even though Democrats now hold more seats in both chambers. In 2007, EFCA had 230 co-sponsors on its day of introduction in the House and 46 in the Senate.

“The labor movement is not part of the problem. It is a big part of the solution,” Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.) said in introducing the bill. He said Democrats were trying to make sure organized labor would be a part of turning the economy around.

 

Republicans pounced, arguing the bill is a gift to labor unions that campaigned for Democrats last fall and helped them win the presidency, a larger House majority and a 58-seat majority in the Senate that improves the chances of moving labor legislation.  

“The card-check bill is not about the economy, and it is not about restoring the middle class. Card-check is all about giving a gift to labor bosses at the expense of both the economy and the middle class,” said Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.).

Miller and Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) indicated Democrats are likely to start the bill in the Senate, where it faces a tougher path to President Obama’s desk.

Last Congress, the bill passed the House easily but stalled in the Senate, gaining only 51 votes for cloture, with Sen. Arlen Specter (Pa.) the only Republican to join Democrats in support of the procedural move.

Democrats now hold 58 seats in the Senate, but it is unclear whether some centrist Democrats will support the legislation this year, when a vote for cloture would likely mean it would become law.

Last year, business opponents could count on President Bush to veto the bill. This year, President Obama has indicated he’ll sign it.

Union officials are confident they’ll have the 60 votes necessary to move the bill out of the Senate. But that has been disputed by lawmakers, with Harkin and Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) both saying the legislation doesn’t have the votes for now.

“By the time we bring it up, we will have 60 votes,” Harkin said at Tuesday’s press conference.

Read the rest:
http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/democrat
s-introduce-card-check-vow-to-move-it-200
9-03-10.html

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Spineless Democrats, a Senate specialty

At least six Senators who have voted to move forward with the so-called card-check proposal, including one Republican, now say they are opposed or not sure — an indication that Senate Democratic leaders are short of the 60 votes they need for approval…

The legislation is divisive and distracting, said Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln in an interview Monday. The Democratic lawmaker, who was previously seen as a supporter, said the Senate should focus on creating jobs and improving the U.S. economy. “I have 90,000 Arkansans who need a job, that’s my No. 1 priority,” she said. The legislation, she said, would be “divisive and we don’t need that right now.”

Read:
http://leisureguy.wordpress.com/2009/0
3/10/spineless-democrats-a-senate-specialty/

Transparency? Biden Appears At Union Event But Cameras Not Allowed

March 5, 2009

Gaffe-prone Vice President of the United States Joe Biden appeared before a union meeting today that did not permit the prying eyes of media cameras and microphones.

The Veep, who is well known for his ramblings and stupid remarks, has been coached repeatedly to stay on message and to adhere rigorously to prepared remarks as they scroll across the telepromter.  Now maybe he can escape a public event without putting his foot in his mouth by simply not allowing the media to record his outings.

Vice President Joe Biden addressed the nation’s largest union groups today as Congress is considering the heavily union-supported Employee Free Choice Act.

The AFL-CIO Executive Council meeting and newly appointed Labor Secretary Hilda Solis are both in Miami this week drumming up support for the bill that would give workers the option of unionizing by getting a majority of the workers to sign cards or a petition instead of holding secret ballot elections.

Biden addressed union members Thursday morning before heading to the Miami Intermodal Center, a transportation project funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Know why nobody listens to Joe Biden?  Because he says stupid stuff, or isn’t recorded at all and certainly doesn’t have Obama’s ear….

Nobody listens to Joe Biden because he isn’t worth hearing….

Toby Hardin of the Telegraph in London wrote about an Obama news conference on February 10:

As reporters started giggling, Obama came close to conceding that Biden was indeed a joke. “You know, I don’t remember exactly what Joe was referring to, not surprisingly.”

Related:
Obama Confirms: Nobody Listens To Joe Biden

US Vice President Joe Biden gestures while US President Barack ... 
US Vice President Joe Biden gestures while US President Barack Obama signs an Executive Order in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building January 21 in Washington, DC. That day the Veep made fun of the Chief justice for his inabiklity to recite the oath of office; which Biden flubbed himself despite a cue card….(AFP/Getty Images/Brendan Smialowski)

From Fox News:

Vice President Joe Biden’s office said Thursday it is honoring the wishes of the union to not have the press attend, which the AFL-CIO acknowledged after previously telling FOX News it was the vice president’s decision….

So much for transparency, but who’s messing with Joe?

Cameras have been banned from Vice President Biden’s address to AFL-CIO leaders in Miami Thursday. 

The vice president’s office said Thursday it is honoring the wishes of the union to have press cameras barred.

“Traditionally, the AFL-CIO Executive Council meetings are closed press. Each of its sessions this week have been closed press,” spokeswoman Elizabeth Alexander said in a statement. 

The AFL-CIO acknowledged Thursday that it was its choice to ban cameras after telling FOX News a day earlier it was the vice president’s decision. Alexander said the veep tried to change the rule but was denied.

“As part of its unprecedented commitment to transparency, Vice President Biden’s office asked that a change to the policy be made so that a pool of print reporters would be allowed to cover the speech and a full transcript of the vice president’s remarks will be sent out this afternoon.”

President Barack Obama doesn’t go anywhere without his TelePrompter:
http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0309/19663.html

Rush Limbaugh never uses a teleprompter….