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Ilike the information about the unions especially seiu Ia member not by choice and the newsletter feed good information
C. Pilz

Greatly appreciate the alerts with such specific information. LRI is a genuine contributor to labor relations information and support.

Hi Phil, I would like to thank your team on our recent victory over the IAFF in our election on Friday. We won with about 2/3 of the votes in our favor. I could not have done it without the great work of Scott. He got to the root of the problem almost immediately and got me headed in the right direction. Thanks again for your expert help.
W. Woodcock

Who Really Buys Political Influence?

Open Secrets and the Center for Responsive Politics have compiled a list of the top 140 political donors in federal politics since 1989. Of the top ten donors five are unions — AFSCME (3), IBEW (7), NEA (8), Laborers (9) and Teamsters (10). The top spot belongs to ActBlue, the Obama netroot money raiser. AT&T comes in second, followed by Goldman Sachs (5) and the American Association for Justice (6) (lawyers who donate 90% to Democrats).

Of the next fifteen, seven are unions — Carpenters (11), SEIU (12), AFT (13), CWA (14), UAW (17), Machinists (19) and the UFCW (21). Emily’s List, with 99% of its donations going to Democrats, comes in 25th. Thirteen additional unions come in ahead of Koch Industries in 83rd place, Walmart at 89th and AIG at 100th. The Club for

Continue reading Who Really Buys Political Influence?

Employee Free Choice Act: Your Company’s "Transition Plan"

The post-election chatter has now turned to the “transition” from the Bush administration to the new Obama administration. That got me thinking. It is time to start planning your company’s transition to the new administration as well.

While the political environment is still uncertain (it looks like there will be at least 57 Democratic votes in the Senate and perhaps even more with the results in Alaska, Georgia and Minnesota still up in the air). But there are two things we know for sure:

The Obama administration will appoint much more pro-labor officials into the Department of Labor, the National Labor Relations Board, OSHA, EEOC and other key departments. Congressional Democrats will act early on a number of key changes to labor and employment law. As we sit today Democrats probably only need to turn 2 Republican Senators to pass legislation and get it to Obama’s desk (the two Independents

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Employee Free Choice Act: Obama Wins – What about the EFCA?

It is Wednesday morning and I am beat.

After staying up late to see whether there would be a call in Minnesota, Georgia, Alaska and Oregon (there wasn’t) I finally hit the sack around 1AM. Things aren’t any clearer this morning.

As I write this today it looks like there will be a runoff in Georgia. In Oregon the Republican has a slim lead with 75% of the ballots counted – still way too close to call (Update 11/05/08 at 6:10 PM – Merkley just pulled into the lead). Minnesota is headed for a recount. It looks like Alaska will remain a Republican seat (Update 11/06/08: I hear there are over 50,000 uncounted ballots in Alaska and that seat will be up in the air for a while).

Based on this, it looks like Democrats will have between 56 and 58 seats when all is said and done (including two

Continue reading Employee Free Choice Act: Obama Wins – What about the EFCA?

Could EFCA Start the Real Fight?

Years ago, a friend of mine came up with this reason to why liberals seemed to be more engaged in social & political activism. According to his explanation, the rationale for both liberal & conservative positions revolved around the same issue: money.

Most conservatives are capitalists – who believe that the best chance for their prosperity lay in the business of being about business. Most liberals believe that their best chance for prosperity involves the amount of money they can siphon from productive sectors of the economy through government largess (income redistribution).

What is a bit scary is the volume of activity that Big Labor adds to the sucking power of that siphon. According to the AFL-CIO, just one of many labor organizations that deployed activists during this campaign season, their efforts included:

* a 21-state presidential battleground program* 70 million phone calls, 10 million door knocks, 57

Continue reading Could EFCA Start the Real Fight?

Obama Coat Tails Likely to Decide Senate Races

Things continue to look grim for opponents of the Employee Free Choice Act. The remaining key races could be decided by factors that are difficult to predict and impossible to control. The Obama campaign has purchased vast amounts of television time so even if Republican candidates wanted to purchase additional time it would be tough to do even if they had the money, which many of them don’t. So, this could come down to the size of Obama’s coat tails. Will he be able to carry Democratic candidates into office with him.

Here is where we stand today:

* Alaska – The jury is still out, literally. Stevens is on trial for lying on his financial disclosure form. The case has gone to the jury but one juror was dismissed Monday and replaced by an alternate. This brings into question whether there will be a verdict. Stevens is counting on

Continue reading Obama Coat Tails Likely to Decide Senate Races

Speaking of Next Tuesday....

…..Where do things stand in terms of the presidential race and Senate races?

The polling at the presidential level does seem to be all over the place, as of late. Some polls have it much closer than others. From what we have read, the major difference in the poll results has to do with the type of weighing that the pollsters are using. There is one school of thought that the upcoming election will be much like past elections in terms of the people who vote — and that roughly the same amount of democrats/republicans/independents that traditionally vote, will vote in this election too. In these surveys, the race is relatively tight — the Gallup poll using this methodology has the race at a 2 point margin as of today.

There is another theory that the folks who turn out next week will be very different from your usual

Continue reading Speaking of Next Tuesday….

A Rose By Any Other Name…

Have you heard about the new bill being teed up to be rushed through Congress once Obama is elected? The “Employee Bullying by Labor Goons Act.” No – haven’t heard of it? Perhaps you know it by the glossy name the unions attached to it, the Employee Free Choice Act. This short editorial frames the issue nicely, while also making addressing the recent “bailout.”

History Is Pretty Clear On This Issue!

The closest thing you’ll get to a peek at the future of the USA under the rule of unions provided by the Employee Free Choice Act has been graciously provided by Clair Berlinski, author of the newly released There Is No Alternative: Why Margaret Thatcher Matters. In a her article today at FrontPageMag.com, she takes us on a brief history lesson.

In the late 70’s, Britain was so paralyzed by trade unions that entire industries were choking. “We don’t want to increase our trade with you,” said the Soviet trade minister to his British counterpart. “You’re always on strike.”

Enter Thatcher in 1979 – and her sweeping 1980 Employment Act. Among the key provisions of the act was the initiation of secret ballot voting for union representation, enacted to end the coercive tactics of union organizers. As the death grip of unions was pried away from

Continue reading History Is Pretty Clear On This Issue!

EFCA Tip of the Iceberg

No matter what your political leanings, if you are a businessman (or woman), you have to be concerned about the impact to the business environment that a liberal sweep of the elections would most likely mean. The Employee Free Choice Act is but a glimpse of what could lie behind the curtain. And you can’t forget about the implications of long-term aspects such as judge selection and the restriction of pro-business speech on the airwaves (“Fairness” doctrine).

I can’t begin to tell you all the different ways you could or should be dealing with this situation (at least not in a blog post). I can’t create your contingency plans. I will suggest that the more you connect in a positive manner with your employees, the better your chances of coming out ahead. The better they understand the nature of your business and it’s competitive advantages, the better they

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Employee Free Choice Act Slated For Fast Track

Mickey Kaus is a writer & reporter at Slate magazine, and has a political blog. He is also an Obama supporter, but is not a fan of unions. According to a recent post, he received information from a Democrat insider that the Dems are making plans to fast track EFCA, “as-is.”

While it could have been hoped that some form of reasonableness would have filtered the EFCA through some compromises, that now appears unlikely, and we’ll see the final bill appear much as it passed the House last year. Obama’s record indicates that he won’t buck who brought him to the table (Big Labor), but will do everything he can to accomodate them.