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Obama’s OFA Is Sending Buses To Ohio

From the Communist Party USA’s Daily Worker Peoples World:

Ohio fights attack on labor

by: Rick Nagin
February 21 2011

Former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, the state AFL-CIO and its affiliates have called for a massive turnout for a rally Tuesday at the Statehouse in Columbus to protest a Republican bill to repeal collective bargaining for public employees.

In robocalls and emails sent throughout the state, Strickland said "the fate of Ohio’s middle class is on the line" and urged people "to join with the thousands who will gather to oppose Senate Bill 5 and the rest of our opponents’ backward agenda."

The agenda of Gov. John Kasich, who narrowly defeated Strickland in November, includes drastic cuts in health and education programs, abolishing the state’s tax on large inheritances, privatizing agencies, such as the turnpike and prisons, curtailing reproductive freedom and restricting rights of immigrants.

Sure it does.

"The people of Wisconsin are standing up and speaking out," Strickland said. "We must do likewise. We must defend the people of our state."

The radical measure to abolish the right, established in 1984, of public employees to bargain over wages, hours, working conditions, health care, and pensions, would also eliminate seniority as a basis for pay increases and layoffs, increase employee contributions to health care and pensions, abolish the right to strike and allow the state to permanently replace workers who do strike.

If the Ohio bill is like the one under consideration in Wisconsin, it does not prevent public sector employees from bargaining over their salaries. Which is the case for most union employees.

Rallies at the Statehouse have grown continuously since hearings on the bill began Feb. 9. Eight hundred, mainly members of the Ohio Civil Service Employees Association, representing state workers came for the first hearing. The following week 2,000, including teachers, public school employees and city and county workers, came to the second and nearly 4,000 rallied last Thursday, including many steel, auto, building trades and other private sector unions and community supporters, at the third hearing.

A small group of tea party members, wearing red, showed up to support the bill at the second hearing and promised to "bring thousands" to the third but the unions answered by printing up and wearing red t-shirts reading "No on SB 5" and "Kill the Bill" at the third hearing, and shouting "Red means No" as rightwing Tea Party representatives testified on the need to curtail "big government." Only a few dozen teabaggers ventured into the crowd.

Within a sea of "Vote No on SB 5" signs, some carried homemade placards reading "Union Rights are Human Rights," "Hitler Outlawed Unions in ’33, Kasich wants to in 2011" and "Bargaining works for Everyone, Ending it Works for Millionaires."

Still more examples of the new civility.

Former State Representative Sue Morano, a nurse in Lorain and member of the Service Employees International Union, was in the crowd.

"This is not just about unions," she said, "it’s about communities. Who do these Republicans think will be buying goods at local stores if unions are busted? If workers lose health care and pensions, it will cripple the tax base. This is what they put up as a solution. This is a Depression-maker!"

No, it would be far better if the state just goes bankrupt.

The first hearings dealt with testimony from the bill’s supporters, including the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, rural school superintendents and other public officials claiming government bodies could not afford union-won wages and benefits, even though thousands of contracts have been mutually agreed to and strikes sharply reduced over the past 27 years that the current law has been in effect.

Also speaking on behalf of the bill was Rebecca Heimlich, Ohio State Director of Americans for Prosperity, the group founded by oil billionaires Charles and David Koch, who many believe are coordinating the national anti-labor offensive. Heimlich repeated the claim often made by Republicans that public employees are paid more than their private sector counterparts. This was later debunked by Amy Hanauer, director of Policy Matters Ohio, who presented research showing that public employees in Ohio are paid 5.7% less than comparable private sector workers.

And we are supposed to believe her.

Opponents of the bill began testifying in the afternoon and continued late into the night.

With the hearing room holding only about 60 people, some 3,000 protesters filled the capitol building’s atrium, rotunda and adjacent stairwells Thursday where proceedings were broadcast. Nearly a thousand others heard the testimony from loudspeakers as they stood outside in unseasonably warm weather on the west lawn.

A huge roar went up as Strickland arrived and made his way through the crowded atrium shaking hands and encouraging the protesters, who began chanting "Bring Back Ted!"

It sounds like Mr. Obama needs to explain to these people that elections have consequences.

Union activists said they would immediately launch a repeal referendum if the bill is passed and some urged a referendum to recall Kasich. Although he won the election with claims he would be better able to create jobs, Kasich’s approval ratings plummeted to around 35 per cent after he announced his union busting plans and slash and burn budget proposals

Sure they did. And never mind that just like Gov. Walker in Wisconsin, Gov. Kasich is doing exactly what he promised he would do if he were elected. A concept that is totally foreign to the Democrats and their union foot soldiers.

Unions are urging members to build pressure on Republican legislators with phone calls and emails.

Tuesday’s rally, preceding the fourth hearing will be the first time unions are bringing buses from throughout the state, reactivating phone banks used during election campaigns and email rapid response networks to mobilize members against Kasich’s program. Police, firefighters, service employees, auto workers and teachers unions are among those organizing buses.

Organize for America, President Barack Obama’s campaign group, is working to fill buses from seven cities and MoveOn, the national progressive group with an email list of 120,000 in Ohio, is mobilizing its members.

It is expected that, aside from Strickland, Democratic members of the state’s U.S. Congressional delegation will also take part.

Remember, this is the same Barack Obama who is calling for ‘a new era of fiscal responsibility.’ Who says that everyone must have skin in the game and be willing to make sacrifices.

Except his comrades.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Monday, February 21st, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

13 Responses to “Obama’s OFA Is Sending Buses To Ohio”

  1. bill

    It’s odd what you get when the union leader’s pensions and health care are fully funded, and the workers pension and health care are not, what could go wrong….

  2. NoNeoCommies

    Can we load up a lot more buses and find a convenient place to stash all these lemmings until a proper cliff is located?

  3. proreason

    Keep them doggies rollin.

    More. Faster. Louder. More obscene. More violent. More angry. More arrogant. More clueless.

    This is so marvelous. Maybe justice does exist.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      The battle lines, though clear and obvious to most, are still “being drawn” and the general populace is always hesitant to cast its lot until it is certain of its own role and consequences. Thus you have quick -to-judgement leftists as they already know. The undecided and otherwise-too-busy masses generally don’t get concerned until it’s in their own yard. But your point is precise and salient. As long as the socialists keep showing their ass, the rest of the country will find it at first distasteful and then will take a position opposing it. The socialists are indeed their own worst enemy when it comes to demanding from the American people and fellow citizens.

      They are now making the lines and issues more clear and, completely through their own actions, defining their loyalties and motives. Just like the petulant children in the white house who want you to “do as I say, not as I do”. I was hoping it would become more obvious and it has. I agree, Pro. Keep it up!

  4. wardmama4

    I live in OH – it’s the first I’ve heard (of course if you put something in print – to liberals and communists alike, it becomes the truth) of a Kasich recall. Much like Detroit – the Unions have destroyed the employment opportunities in OH – locally the unemployment rate is 9.9% – so as people flee the state in search of jobs – how is that going to help the tax base and state budget. Don’t believe it will happen – look at a microcosm of that possibility – Cincinnati has dwindled in population while all the outlying suburbs have exploded because the city taxes just went up and up – and jobs left as their taxes went up. It will happen on the state level – if they don’t fix it.

    And that is all Kasich is doing – attempting to fix the mess that OH has become.

    And liberals out there – how is OFA a grassroots or local uprising at all? Especially now that we are finding out that the Obama Admin is attempting to generate fake ‘social’ advocates out there to promote their agenda.

    Lie and cheat and hire fake protesters – How in the heck isn’t this the behavior of a petty dictator at all?

    • wardmama4

      The ‘big’ rally is today – wish I could be there but we are at the financial end of our rope – figuring out what to dump first.

      But unlike the OFA and Union ‘workers’ – I am not being paid to travel to Columbus to ‘state my position’ – so my support has become more and more invisible of late.

      For those American patriots who are in Columbus supporting our new GOV – know that me & my family are praying for you all and for America. It is all we can do for the moment.

  5. beautyofreason

    It’s quite telling that there is virtually no difference between the CPUSA and the current administration. I guess CPUSA sees Democrats as a means to an end. Imagine if this happy alliance had occurred in the forties or fifties. Americans would have been shocked and they would have voted their displeasure. Now it seems like very few people care. I’m surprised the President has a 50% approval rating according to Gallup this week. Has nobody else noticed the 10% unemployment rate? Exempting of course, the wonderful people who post at this site.

    ‘Only a few dozen teabaggers”

    Great language choice. Very educated. Reminds me of a toddler slinging crap on a wall.

  6. merkelerk

    The libs have been screaming at us for years to be more tolerant.
    We are fed a constant diet of homosexuality being an acceptable alternative lifestyle.
    All this to the extent that we even have hate laws to defend homosexuals.

    Why then is it perfectly acceptable for them to use a homosexual reference as a derogatory term for the Tea Party?

    Why is it acceptable for libs to use references to Hitler and Nazis to describe us?

    Why is it acceptable for them to use images of violence, violent rhetoric and actual violence against us?

    I guess that, like Islam, everything is acceptable if it helps to achieve ones goals. Nothing is immoral or criminal to a lib since their goals are so well thought out and so incredibly noble and selfless.

  7. Liberals Demise

    Reproductive Freedom?
    Where in the HELL does this come into play?
    If we are talking about abortion then it is “NOT” reproductive freedom.
    It is out and out MURDER!!

    Or maybe they are talking about homos. But that can’t be the case because
    homos can’t reproduce.
    Then again…….liberals are the by-product of such unions.
    Ewwwwwwwww and yuck!

  8. canary

    Wisconsin strikers that called in sick committed fraud. Doctor’s who said they couldn’t work committed fraud.
    These people were not sick or disabled enough not to go to work. They didn’t stay home in bed on bed rest either.
    I did not know that some states allow teachers to strike, while some don’t. Of course all have the right to assemble and picket.

    I think Obama not saying one word to teachers who have abandoned our children, is leading to some of his loyal voters to take a 2nd look. The rapid damage Obama & the teachers unions have done in 2 years to education; add 2 more, and it won’t be as easy as just reversing or stopping a bill. Our children will be left with more than debt. It’s going to end up like the old Soviet Union.

  9. TerryAnne

    I read this article and then scrolled to the top to see who wrote it. Was rather suprised to see CPUSA; thought it was AP the whole time.

  10. wardmama4

    We are their boss – I vote for fire them all.




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