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Card Check

If you are following the debate over the Employee Free Choice Act (card check), the Workplace Fairness Institute has a Twitter feed with lots of good links. Ed Morrisey has a great post today on the issue at Hot Air.

Today, Democrats in both chambers of Congress will carry Big Labor's water and introduce the Employee Free Choice Act, better known as Card Check. With wide majorities in both the House and Senate, Barack Obama shold expect to see the bill on his desk soon. However, the Wall Street Journal reports that several key Senators have second thoughts about their support, now that it will really count -- including one RINO who could make the difference...

The list includes one RINO who suddenly discovered he was on an endangered-species list. Arlen Specter voted for Card Check in 2007, the last time it hit the floor, but the vote then was relatively safe. Even with a slim Democratic majority, it had no real chance of passing Congress, and then-President Bush had already vowed to veto it. As John Kline said in his conference call, a yes vote was a safe way to pander to union constituencies without having any chance of doing real damage.

Circumstances changed with the election of Barack Obama and the establishment of a near-filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. A yes vote is no longer safe, but will likely result in the implementation of Card Check. It's one of the GOP's biggest legislative priorities, along with FOCA, and a betrayal here will cinch the GOP effort to unseat Specter in 2010. After all, if he won't oppose Card Check, what part of the Obama agenda will he not support?

More at Heritage.

Update: Here is a quiz to help you determine whether or not you would be affected by card check and here is another Twitter feed with updates on the issue.

Update II: Rachel Maddow's embarrassing EFCA flub.


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Comments (37)

To begin with, neither you ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

To begin with, neither you nor your link explain what Rachel Maddow's "flub" is even supposed to be.

You're not exactly sure what anyone is talking about with this bill but you do know you're against it.


Well, if it were called the... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Well, if it were called the "'Allow Employees to be Buttonholed by Union Supporters and 'Persuaded' to Sign a Card Saying They Want to Force Their Workplace To Unionize' Bill" then I imagine most folk would be supportive of it.

Don't you, Adrian?

But it just doesn't roll trippingly off the tongue. 'Card Check' sounds so much more... sanitary.

Defeat Card Check go to: <... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Defeat Card Check go to:

YouOrYourWorkAren'tWorthAnything.com

or

Don'tEvenThinkOfAttainingMiddleClassStatusYou'reNotGoodEnough.com

or

Let'sLiveLikeTheyDoInThirdWorldNations.com

And don't forget:S... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

And don't forget:

ScrewASecretBallot-SignTheCardOrWeBreakYourArm.com

or

GodDamnItDontWorkSoHardYouMakeTheRestOfUsLookBad.com

or

WeDontGiveADamnIfYouWantedAUnionOrNot.Com

and

PayYourDamnDuesBecauseWeKnowWhereYouLive.Com

The democrats just do not w... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

The democrats just do not want a fair vote ever. ww

Plus...JackUpBenef... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Plus...

JackUpBenefitsTillTheCompanyBleeds.com

YouHADaGoodJobWithUnionSupport.Net

CompanyWentUnderButTheUnionWillBeFine.fk.me

SorryAboutYourJobButWasntItNiceWhileItLasted.org

Adrian, are you joking? Di... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Adrian, are you joking? Did you actually go to the link and read it? It quite plainly explains that Maddow tells her audience to "read the bill" and then she quotes from a misleading fact sheet, not the bill.

Here is the key part of EFCA. Emphasis mine.

`(6) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, whenever a petition shall have been filed by an employee or group of employees or any individual or labor organization acting in their behalf alleging that a majority of employees in a unit appropriate for the purposes of collective bargaining wish to be represented by an individual or labor organization for such purposes, the Board shall investigate the petition. If the Board finds that a majority of the employees in a unit appropriate for bargaining has signed valid authorizations designating the individual or labor organization specified in the petition as their bargaining representative and that no other individual or labor organization is currently certified or recognized as the exclusive representative of any of the employees in the unit, the Board shall not direct an election but shall certify the individual or labor organization as the representative described in subsection (a).

Basically what it says is that if a union gets a majority of signatures then the NLRB "shall not direct an election but shall certify the individual or labor organization." If the union gets 50%+1 signatures then NLRB must certify the company as unionized. There is no secret ballot election at that point.

"There is no secret ballot ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

"There is no secret ballot election at that point."

Correct --> because the *choice* to have a union was already made by the signatures.

About all I can really say ... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

About all I can really say is - whenever any group or organization wants to take away the right to a secret ballot election, then there's a definite reason why they don't want those elections.

Card check removes the 'uncertainty' of a secret ballot. That, I believe, is a bad idea when it comes to worker organizations. If you can't persuade the rank and file to join up through your described benefits, then they need the ability to reject the offering without exposing themselves to union 'persuasion'.


"Correct --> because the... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

"Correct --> because the *choice* to have a union was already made by the signatures."

"We need three more signatures to unionize this shop. Pete, go pick up Phil's kids from school and make sure you give 'em a union flyer. Sam, go get Jenny's kids. Harve - go get John's. Deliver 'em safely, guys - we don't want prospective members to feel like we don't care for their families! In the mean time, I'll have a conversation with them, explaining just how important their cards are..."

No, I see NO potential for abuse there at all! Adrian, you just make it so clear!

Adrian, so are you admittin... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Adrian, so are you admitting that EFCA gets rid of the secret ballot?

"We need three more signatu... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

"We need three more signatures to unionize this shop. Pete, go pick up Phil's kids from school and make sure you give 'em a union flyer. Sam, go get Jenny's kids. Harve - go get John's. Deliver 'em safely, guys - we don't want prospective members to feel like we don't care for their families! In the mean time, I'll have a conversation with them, explaining just how important their cards are..."

There are ten or more people involved in your conspiracy-fantasy just to get three signatures.

Arlen Sphincter needs a "bl... (Below threshold)
moseby:

Arlen Sphincter needs a "blanket party"...

"Adrian, so are you admitti... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

"Adrian, so are you admitting that EFCA gets rid of the secret ballot?"

There will still be secret ballots.


"There will still be secret... (Below threshold)
Eric:

"There will still be secret ballots"

That is simply not true. Read the EFCA bill, read the section I pasted above.

the Board shall not direct an election but shall certify the individual or labor organization as the representative

Today, if a union gets signatures of 30% of the workers then the next step is to have a secret ballot election. If 50%+1 of the votes in that election go for the union then the company is unionized.

The whole point of EFCA is to "streamline" the process for making it easier to unions to organize.

The first line of the Bill explains that.

To amend the National Labor Relations Act to establish an efficient system to enable employees to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to provide for mandatory injunctions for unfair labor practices during organizing efforts, and for other purposes.

If the union gets 50%+1 signatures then the company becomes unionized, there is no second step secret ballot election.

The key fundamental difference is that card check signatures are open to everyone. The union and the employer know who signed and who didn't sign. The employees are wide open to intimidation from both the union and the employer.

A secret ballot election is by definition secret. If you vote, no one knows how you voted, you are free from intimidation from either the union or the employer.

Why is that such a difficult concept to understand? Why do people of the left keeping lying when it says so in plain, well legalese, English.

There will still be a secre... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

There will still be a secret ballot:

"Under the Employee Free Choice Act, workers make the decision either to use majority sign-up or a general election. And a minority of workers, as low as 30%, get to overrule the majority if they want a ballot."

^cut and pasted from Hullabaloo

The passage of EFCA does not mean an end to the secret ballot. The "end of the secret ballot" is not a reason to oppose the bill.

That is B.S. Adrian. You d... (Below threshold)
Eric:

That is B.S. Adrian. You did the same thing as Rachel Maddow, you cut and pasted somebody else's interpretation. I cut and pasted directly from the Bill itself.

NOWHERE in the Bill does it say any of what you quote.

What do you think "the board shall not direct an election" means?

Adrian,Is <a href="h... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Adrian,
Is George McGovern wrong?

If Card Check and guarantee... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

If Card Check and guaranteed gov't intervention (arbitration) are deleted from the final bill, the unions are not going to be happy. All that money spent on campaign contributions....wasted.

Oops I clicked too soon.</p... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Oops I clicked too soon.

Adrian is George McGovern wrong?

Is Al Sharpton wrong?

Eric,The right to ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Eric,

The right to petition for a secret ballot is already a law and is not effected by this new EFCA Bill. That is why it's not mentioned in this new bill. People that want a secret ballot have the right to ask for one and they just need 30% to get one. That has nothing to do with this bill.

The passage of the EFCA Bill does not mean an end to the secret ballot.

The EFCA Bill is like insta... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

The EFCA Bill is like installing an EZ Pass system.

You can drive through with the EZ Pass or, if you want to, stop and pay at the toll booth.

Ah, Adrian - you didn't cou... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

Ah, Adrian - you didn't count very well, did you? Or perhaps I didn't set the scenario well enough to get you to think. 4 union 'organizers' from outside the shop - to get three more signatures, to get the shop going on a card-check basis. You're the one who brought up the 50%+1 - and if the shop is large enough there'll be help from outside with filling out the cards, right?

And if those signatures aren't exactly 'voluntary' - who really cares? The union helped the kids get home safely, didn't they? Just ignore the implicit threat, that if you DON'T sign the card maybe your kid might turn up missing. Hey, the union would NEVER do anything like that, just to get more dues!

And if you think they might, and you sign because you're intimidated - well, just goes to show you're a paranoid parent, doesn't it? But you still signed. No chance to vote on it - so suck it up and pay your dues!

Secret ballots avoid the intimidation factor. And that, it would seem, is exactly why the unions don't want them. They don't trust that the workers will come to the right decision without their help.

As far as the unions helping the workers - that's really worked well in Detroit for GM, hasn't it? Bleed the company dry, but you can bet it won't be the UNION folk missing paychecks when/if GM folds. There's a difference between a symbiotic relationship and a parasitical one - and the UAW crossed that line quite a while back.

Adrian, you are simply and ... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Adrian, you are simply and unquestionably wrong.

From EFCA:

If the Board finds that a majority of the employees in a unit appropriate for bargaining has signed valid authorizations designating the individual or labor organization specified in the petition as their bargaining representative and that no other individual or labor organization is currently certified or recognized as the exclusive representative of any of the employees in the unit, the Board shall not direct an election but shall certify the individual or labor organization as the representative described in subsection (a)

This section says that if the board (NLRB) concludes that a majority of employees signed the card check authorization then the NLRB SHALL NOT direct an election but SHALL certify the union.

That is a definitive statement, where the NLRB SHALL NOT do X but instead SHALL do Y. There is no UNLESS Z happens.

It says nothing about unless there are 30% of the employees who feel otherwise you SHALL hold an election. In fact the very first sentence of the provision says "Notwithstanding any other provision of this section" is a legal way of saying this provision overrides all other provisions in this section.

The secret ballot removes t... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

The secret ballot removes the possibility of intimidation or reprisal for voting a particularly way. The fact that unions and many democrats want to do away with the secret ballot demonstrates they expect to benefit from intimidation and reprisal.

The only valid point I have heard from democrats on this issue is that it's unfair for employers to decertify a union using a scheme similar to card check, but require a secret ballot to certify a union. I agree, however, two wrongs don't make a right. The solution is to require a secret ballot to both certify and decertify a union.

I expect the law will pass in the next year, and I hope that teaches businesses a lesson about giving money to democrats.

Eric,Read 21 again. ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Eric,
Read 21 again. There is another existing piece of legislation that guarantees the right to a secret ballot if you want one.

This new legislation that you keep quoting doesn't have anything to do with that. It won't change the existing law.

And then read 22 again.

And then read 21.

And then 22.

And then read 25 once more.

The new legislation also do... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

The new legislation also doesn't say anything about terrorism being illegal. Why don't unions think terrorism should be illegal?

"The right to petition for ... (Below threshold)
Eric:

"The right to petition for a secret ballot is already a law and is not effected by this new EFCA Bill."

In General- Section 9(c) of the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 159(c)) is amended by adding at the end the following:

`(6) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, whenever a petition shall have been filed by an employee or group of employees or any individual or labor organization acting in their behalf alleging that a majority of employees in a unit appropriate for the purposes of collective bargaining wish to be represented by an individual or labor organization for such purposes, the Board shall investigate the petition. If the Board finds that a majority of the employees in a unit appropriate for bargaining has signed valid authorizations designating the individual or labor organization specified in the petition as their bargaining representative and that no other individual or labor organization is currently certified or recognized as the exclusive representative of any of the employees in the unit, the Board shall not direct an election but shall certify the individual or labor organization as the representative described in subsection (a).

Adrian, what part of AMENDED don't you understand? EFCA is an amendment to the existing law that overrides all of the other provisions concerning the secret ballot.

The new section is titled "Streamlining Union Certification". The whole purpose of EFCA is to have a process that gets rid of the Secret Ballot election. Once the union presents 50%+1 card check signatures the NLRB is required to certify not hold an election.

Adrian is a union hack.... (Below threshold)

Adrian is a union hack.

And loves the MAFIA.

Eric,"Once the uni... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Eric,

"Once the union presents 50%+1 card check signatures the NLRB is required to certify not hold an election."

That is true -- that is the streamlining of which we speak.

If no one objects to having the union chosen by filling out the cards then, yes, there is no voting of any kind. There's no need for ballots, secret or otherwise, because there is no voting.

But that does not prevent someone from asking for a vote with secret ballots which is guaranteed in another law.

All you have to do is ask for it.

You can go through the tollbooth with EZ Pass unless someone in the car wants to pay with cash then you have to stop at the tollbooth.

EFCA does not mean the end to the secret ballot. The secret ballot isn't effected by EFCA. The secret ballot isn't mentioned in EFCA because it's guaranteed by another law.

If you're worried about workers losing the secret ballot you needn't be. If you object to EFCA because it makes forming a union easier "just because" then you might want to oppose EFCA.

I can't explain it any more.

Adrian,You are the o... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Adrian,
You are the own who doesn't seem to understand. The law you are referring to is the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 159(c)). That is the law that among other things covers union organization and how secret ballot elections are held.

EFCA amends that law, and says "Notwithstanding any other provision of this section..." Look at the definition of the word "Notwithstanding"

Notwithstanding = in spite of; without being opposed or prevented by

Paraphrasing -

(6) Without being opposed or prevented by any other provision of this section, whenever a petition shall have been filed by an employee or group of employees or any individual or labor organization ...

I repeat EFCA is an amendment to the existing labor laws and overrides all other provisions including the ones that cover secret ballot elections.

The phrase "the Board shall not direct an election" specifically forbids the NLRB from holding an election if a majority of signatures are collected. There is no overriding provision to hold a secret ballot election because EFCA IS the overriding provision.

Let me give you a real world example of how unions have collected signatures that would be legally sufficient for the NLRB to certify the union.

The union holds a meeting to discuss why they should represent the employees. The employees who attend are asked to sign an attendence sheet. At the bottom of the sheet in fine print, it says "The above signatories authorize blah blah blah to be their representative in all future labor organization efforts."

The people who sign think they are merely signing an attendance sheet. What they have really done is signed a contract authorizing the union to represent them. The union is not even obligated to tell them that they signed that authorization. Those people have no idea at all that they authorized the union to represent them.

With EFCA, if 50%+1 people sign that attendence sheet, guess what happens, the union is automatically certified by the NLRB. If you live in a non-right to work state, you are forced to join the union and pay union dues whether you want to or not, you have no choice in the matter.

That's what they mean by Employee Free Choice.

That is an actual example. It's legal and no intimidation or conspiracy was involved.

By the way I'm not speaking out of my ass here, I work for a Labor and Employment law firm.

>But that does not prevent ... (Below threshold)

>But that does not prevent someone from asking for a vote with secret ballots which is guaranteed in another law. All you have to do is ask for it.

No, this shows a clear misrepresentation of the law. The new law effectively abolishes the secret ballot as elections are no longer necessary. If the union gets its thugs to intimidate people into signing the cards, and they will, because people are justifiably afraid of the Mafia, and that's who runs the unions, even in this age of Hope and Change, then the employees become unionized, even without a vote.

That mythical 30% you speak of can then request a vote until they are blue in the face, or found dead in the gutter, either way. But they have already lost. The union has its 50% +1, and that's the end of that.

>You can go through the tollbooth with EZ Pass unless someone in the car wants to pay with cash then you have to stop at the tollbooth.

Here we start to veer of into the land of incomprehensible poppycock. This is supposed to be some kind of metaphor?

>EFCA does not mean the end to the secret ballot. The secret ballot isn't effected by EFCA. The secret ballot isn't mentioned in EFCA because it's guaranteed by another law.

It's all the same law. The new amendment supercedes the previous law. You are simply lying here, and playing dumb.

>If you're worried about workers losing the secret ballot you needn't be. If you object to EFCA because it makes forming a union easier "just because" then you might want to oppose EFCA.

Just because? Yeah, that's why. Just because. And if you don't want a law that makes it easier for a mugger to slit your throat, then you might want to oppose that one, too.

>I can't explain it any more.

I guess you can't explain that which you do not understand, nor that which you wish to obfuscate with disingenuous mistruths.

The "notwithstanding" just ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

The "notwithstanding" just means the two laws are discreet. The old one isn't effected by the new one. You can still ask for a secret ballot.


You say:

"With EFCA, if 50%+1 people sign that attendence sheet, guess what happens, the union is automatically certified by the NLRB. If you live in a non-right to work state, you are forced to join the union and pay union dues whether you want to or not, you have no choice in the matter."

True -- unless you ask for a vote then you can have one with secret ballots.

What you have convinced me of is that you are just pretending not to understand -- it took me a while.

"But that does not prevent ... (Below threshold)
Eric:

"But that does not prevent someone from asking for a vote with secret ballots which is guaranteed in another law."

Adrian, let me try to explain this again.

THERE IS NO OTHER LAW.

The only law we are talking about is the National Labor Relations
Act
.

EFCA changes the National Labor Relations Act.

EFCA eliminates secret ballot elections by overriding the provisions that allow for a secret ballot election.

If there is another law, then prove it. Cite and quote the specific law, Title, Chapter and Section that does what you say.

Prove it, or admit you are wrong. If you prove me wrong I will admit it and apologize. By a man and do the same.

"The "notwithstanding" just... (Below threshold)
Eric:

"The "notwithstanding" just means the two laws are discreet. The old one isn't effected by the new one. You can still ask for a secret ballot."

There are NOT two laws. It is the same law. I'm going to keep repeating it until you get it through your thick head.

EFCA is not a new law, EFCA changes the existing law.

The "Notwithstanding" is a way of saying all of the other provisions don't count if the union gets a majority of signatures. Once the union gets that majority then the NLRB is explicitly prevented from holding an election and is specifically required to certify the union.

There is nothing to prevent that from happening.

The sad thing is that many ... (Below threshold)

The sad thing is that many people are stupid enough to believe Adrian's outright lies, which the unions and Dems are paying people to propagate on the Internet and in the media. The media are going along with it nicely, calling it the "Employee Free Choice Act" without ever pointing out the Orwellian irony of such a name. If it was called, more accurately, the "Abolishment of the Secret Ballot Act," maybe some people would object.

And once your job is unionized, they own you. They own your job, your benefits, your right to work, your money, and even your voice in influencing the political landscape.

And once you're in a union, you have no chance of ever reversing that course.

Also, if you want to do what is best to get the economy going again, why not just look to Detroit to see where stronger Unions will bring us?

Maddow gets blown out of th... (Below threshold)
Ed Frank:

Maddow gets blown out of the water in this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ZkvNKy0tww




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