December 13, 2008

YOU MEAN 80 YEARS OF HATING ON THE GOP HAS CONSEQUENCES?:

Auto bailout's death seen as a Republican blow at unions: For some Senate Republicans, a vote against the bailout was a vote against the United Auto Workers, and against organized labor in general (Jim Puzzanghera, December 13, 2008, Los Angeles Times)


"If the [United Auto Workers], which is perceived as one of the strongest unions in the country, can be put under control, that may send a message across the whole country," said Michigan State University professor Richard Block, a labor relations expert.

Such antipathy to unions was an undercurrent through the weeks of negotiations leading up to Thursday's Senate vote rejecting the plan.

Handing a defeat to labor and its Democratic allies in Congress was also seen as a preemptive strike in what is expected to be a major battle for the new Congress in January: the unions' bid for a so-called card check law that would make it easier for them to organize workers, potentially reversing decades of declining power. The measure is strongly opposed by business groups.

"This is the Democrats' first opportunity to pay off organized labor after the election," read an e-mail circulated Wednesday among Senate Republicans. "This is a precursor to card check and other items. Republicans should stand firm and take their first shot against organized labor, instead of taking their first blow from it."


Now, if only the GOP had sense enough to appeal to the non-union immigrant laborers.

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Posted by Orrin Judd at December 13, 2008 10:02 AM
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