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Biden To Union: We Can Pass Card Check

From the Wall Street Journal:

Biden to AFL-CIO: Organizing Bill Can Pass

March 1, 2010

Vice President Joe Biden told the AFL-CIO that the Obama administration will still be able to push through a controversial union organizing bill that has been stalled for the past year and looked all but dead once Democrats lost their 60-seat super-majority in the Senate.

At the Buena Vista Palace Hotel in Orlando, Fla., where the labor federation is holding its annual winter meeting, Biden asked for continued support from union leaders despite the administration’s inability to push through two big items on labor’s wish list: the Employee Free Choice Act, which would make it easier for unions to organize new members, and a pro-union nominee to the National Labor Relations Board.

“I know it doesn’t seem like it, but we’ve come a long way in 12 months,” Biden told several hundred union officials. “In terms of the NLRB [National Labor Relations Board], we’re going to get it done. In the fight for EFCA [Employees Free Choice Act], we’ve got to sit down and figure out where we go from here…. I think we’re going to get it done.”

The vice president’s tone was muted, even defensive at times, compared to a year ago when he addressed a more optimistic room full of many of the same union leaders. Ahead of this year’s meeting, some union presidents suggested the mood would be more contentious once union leaders had a chance to question the vice president in a closed-door session.

“I think they owe some answers this time,” said Thomas Buffenbarger, president of the International Association of Machinists. “There’s always something that crops up and gets in the way of labor’s agenda.”

Biden spent most of his hour-long talk on job creation, and made the case to union officials that the administration’s greatest priority is to stimulate growth in jobs that unions could then go out and organize.

Ain’t it the truth?

The only jobs this administration is interested in creating are union jobs.

Because they aren’t interested in jobs. They are only interested in votes.

He cited federal funding to promote jobs building and servicing wind turbines, the power grid and high-speed rail projects. “It’s time for the world to start taking more of our products and fewer of our jobs,” he said.

So we are going to start selling power grids and high-speed rail projects to the world?

Which world?

In defending the administration’s record over the past year in saving union jobs through the federal stimulus package, Biden addressed by first name the union leaders representing teachers, government workers, laborers and miners, among others.

“Gerry, tens of thousands of AFSCME members are still working,” he said to Gerald McEntee, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

At least Mr. Biden is honest enough to acknowledge that their goal was to save union jobs.

And once again, they aren’t out to save jobs, but to save votes.

While union officials are eager for more legislative action, several acknowledged that they can’t afford to alienate allies within the administration.

“The labor movement is a long way from throwing the president under the bus,” said John Gage, president of the American Federation of Government Employees. “I think we had exaggerated hopes for the Obama administration, and people are taking an objective look at where we are.”

In a sign of labor’s belt-tightening, the federation’s annual winter meeting will cost about $250,000 less than last year’s gathering, according to a member of the group’s executive council. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said he told unions to bring fewer staff in order to encourage more frank conversations among leaders during closed door sessions.

So the union bosses confab in Florida is costing a quarter million dollars of members’ dues less than it did last year – which was supposedly the height of the ‘Great Recession.’

What “belt tightening”!

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “Biden To Union: We Can Pass Card Check”

  1. canary says:

    Obama holds an enormous personal grudge against AFL-CIO for major snubbing him and & supporting Tom Hynes when Obama ran against him.

  2. proreason says:

    Do the math.

    Every single policy they advocate takes freedom away from Americans.

    Now, check out what happened to the world starting in 1776, when freedom began it’s journey from a tiny group of aristocrats to 300,000,000 people in the USA…and the side effects in Europe and other areas of the world. Review personal wealth, health, longevity, communications, work weeks, communications, poverty, housing, class mobility, gender freedoms, racial freedoms, social mobility, geographic mobility, personal independence, entertainment, etc., etc., etc.

    Next, check out what has happened in every country in the world that has clamped down on freedom. Start with Russia, China and North Korea. Count the dead bodies, the GNP’s, the life expectancies, etc.

    Then come back and tell me why we should be taking freedoms away from Americans.

  3. GetBackJack says:


    I really don’t know what else has to be said.

  4. bousquem says:

    I wonder if the democrats will try and pull reconcilation on the union bill to. Unions represent workers and therefore taxes and budgets so it must be okay, will probably be their flimsy excuse if they try it.

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