As Congress shifts its attention to the economy and a jobs bill, Richard Trumka, the new and controversial president of American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), the largest federation of unions in the United States and Canada, wants a piece of the action and is set to push his job-killing agenda, which is harmful to workers.
Trumka continues to press for the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act (EFCA), legislation that would result in increased unemployment and job loss. Just a few days ago, Trumka stated that we’ll “see EFCA passed in the first quarter of 2010,” and added that “we must do it now – not next year, not even this summer. Now.”
Americans should be alarmed that Trumka and union bosses are pressuring Congress to pass EFCA, when the clear impact would be negative for our economy. Worse yet, some labor bosses are talking about actually incorporating EFCA into a so-called “jobs bill”.
As reported by Bloomberg News, “The card-check legislation may be incorporated early next year into legislation in the Senate to create jobs, according to Steve Rosenthal, a Democratic consultant and former political director at the AFL-CIO, the nation’s largest labor organization.”
Let’s be clear, the American people are extremely concerned with the state of the economy as unemployment remains in double digits. If Congress entertains taking up legislation that would force small businesses – the nation’s top job creator – to close their doors or move overseas, those politicians doing the bidding of labor bosses would feel the full impact of their recklessness on November 2nd.
Interestingly, Big Labor’s argument that workers need or want the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act is deceiving, at best. In fact, the Workforce Fairness Institute just released polling from Nevada that states not only do union members oppose EFCA, but they reject both the card check and binding arbitration provisions within the legislation.
Under EFCA, workers would lose their rights to a secret ballot election and be coerced into joining a union, which would provide a jolt to union membership that is currently at an all-time low. An increase in union membership means more money from union dues will head into Richard Trumka’s coffers.
Furthermore, the rights of business owners would be under attack if EFCA became law. Employers and employees would lose their right to negotiate with one another on wages and benefits. This legislation would give the government control over contract negotiations and take it out of the hands of both business owners and workers resulting in contracts that are binding for at least two years
While some continue to write off EFCA as a non-issue at this time, union bosses such as Trumka are stealthily promoting this agenda. Trumka was quoted in a January 3rd article in the Morning Star urging Congress to advance President Barack Obama’s pledge to pass the pro-union Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act. “We need to give workers the ability to bargain for a fair share. That means passing EFCA to give workers the freedom to form a union and get a fair contract”, he said.
Trumka knows what’s at stake, but he is more interested in lining the pockets of fellow union bosses everywhere instead of siding with the American people who want their right to a secret ballot protected and believe the government should not take over small businesses.
With the economy struggling and business owners simply trying to keep the lights on, any effort to insert EFCA into a “jobs bill” would turn it into the “job-loss bill” and further depress our economy. And those in Congress who vote for it would find that the first job lost would be their own.