Union Members Not Happy With Their Leader

In an interesting side bar to this week’s elections, a survey by conducted by long-time pollster Frank Luntz indicated that the majority of union members are dissatisfied that their union leadership chose to spend so much dues money on the political campaigns. Among the findings:

• 60 percent of union members oppose their union bosses’ political spending in the 2010 midterm elections • 60 percent believe that a mostly even balance of power between Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill is best for America • 59 percent of union membership would actually vote to replace their own “union leadership” if given a secret ballot election to do so

Download a PDF of the 18-page survey here.

Nurses Union Keeps Head In Sand

Big Labor looks at the world through very heavily tinted economic glasses, and refuses to acknowledge the basics of marketplace realities. In Northern California, the standard union reaction to management market-driven survival strategies are playing out again, as the CNA voices opposition to a hospital selling off several service units in order so save the company $11 million a year.

The nurses union is reacting to the “personal” loss of the dues associated with the potential 69 nurses who may lose their jobs at the hospital due to the move. The CNA is couching its opposition to the move in terms of the loss of services to the community, but according to CEO Bob Merwin, “Hospitals throughout Northern California and the country are exiting renal services and skilled nursing. It has been demonstrated that other community providers who

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Future Forward?

France provides a glimpse of what could be in our near future, if Big Labor continues to receive the largess of its friend in the White House. The plight of union-led multi-employer pensions plans has been highlighted several times in the last few months, along with AFL-CIO head Richard Trumka’s plea to nationalize all private pension programs. With the rise in membership of public (government) unions, and migration of more of the population into shaky union-managed pensions plans, it is not difficult to foresee similar rioting in the streets of the U.S.A.

CNA Delusional?

When the California Nurses Association (CNA) threatened Watsonville Community Hospital with a strike, hospital management made contingency plans to divert emergency room traffic to a neighboring hospital, for the safety of the patients. Ludicrously enough, the union doesn’t see it the same way. Lisa Harlow of the CNA said that reducing emergency room services was more of a danger to patients, and amounted to “holding the community hostage.”

Who is holding whom hostage? It is disingenuous for the union to continually say they are fighting for greater nurse/patient rations, but that if they walk out on strike, patients needing ER services will be better served at a hospital with a contingent of nurses walking the sidewalk than across town at a fully-staffed facility. Perhaps the CNA is not really about ratios after all, but about dues…

EFCA Update

As a follow-up to our Insight article, this Update article will highlight some of the results from this week’s election, and Big Labor’s response.

Pat Cleary writing for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce sums up Big Labor’s political predicament nicely:

Imagine waking up today as a union leader, having just burned $90 million of your members’ money, and having to tell them that you came up empty-handed. Oops!

Well, that’s the situation in which unions find themselves today. Figure AFSCME spent about $90 million of their members’ hard-earned dues to support candidates that a whole bunch of the members don’t support. The National Education Association took a break from thwarting education reform to pour $40 million of their members’ money down the same rat hole. Not to be outdone, the SEIU burned $44 million or so, too. Nice.

But worse

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Labor Relations Insight by Phillip Wilson

The Republicans gave the Democrats a spanking in the mid-term elections this week. Voters rebuked Democrats in an unprecedented manner. The election results raise a number of perplexing questions. What are Democrats planning to do about the Tea Party movement? For that matter, what are Republicans going to do about them (after all, in retrospect the Tea Party probably cost the Republicans control of the Senate by nominating a couple of nit-wits in the Nevada and Connecticut races)? What is going to happen to health care and financial reform?

For our readers a more important question is probably top of mind: what impact is this election likely to have on labor policy and labor unions? Here is our take:

1. EFCA is dead. In case you haven’t heard, unions REALLY wanted EFCA. Unions managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory

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Breaking News: Delta Remains Non-Union

The first of three winner take all union elections with Delta Airlines has come to a close, with the Airline victorious over the Association of Flight Attendants (52% to 48%). There were roughly 20,100 attendants who voted in one of the largest private industry union elections in the nation’s history. Baggage and cargo handlers will be wrapping up their elections within the next two weeks to determine the airline’s future path.

YouTube Video: Terry Goddard exchanges Pizza for Votes

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Another Plan to Buy Government

Big Labor not only squanders millions of dollars of union dues on political campaigns, they also run “training camps” to groom union members for political office. New Jersey currently boasts of the most effective of these efforts. On tomorrow’s ballot, 53 of those candidates will have completed the AFL-CIO sponsored boot camp.

The effort in New Jersey alone cost the AFL-CIO approximately $250,000 this year.

More than 160 current officeholders have been through the program, including 8 members of the Legislature, 12 county freeholders, 18 mayors and a county clerk. The majority of them are Democrats.

“The concept was to take our members and apprentice them in the field of politics, just as we apprentice them in their own crafts,” said Charles Wowkanech, the president of the state AFL-CIO. “We started with zoning boards, school boards, councils, then mayor,

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YouTube Video: Top Union Official Caught on Tape Discussing Voter Fraud

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