EFCA Supporters Head For The Hills

Katie Gage
October 25, 2010

As we approach Election Day, it’s worthwhile to reflect on what has taken place over the course of the last two years. In November 2008, Big Labor was licking its chops anticipating passage of arguably the most significant change in labor law in American history. The bail out to union bosses known as the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act (EFCA) was imminent after Big Labor dropped nearly half a billion dollars getting the current administration and Congressional leadership elected.

Yet, today, President Obama and labor bosses have lost support on their forced unionization agenda both with the electorate and in Congress. Small businesses have stood up and made their voices heard and the American people have echoed their concerns.

Take West Virginia, for example. Just days ago, Governor Joe Manchin, who is running for the U.S. Senate stated that he didn’t support EFCA, relenting after fierce pressure from job creators. He stated his opposition to both the card check and mandatory, binding arbitration provisions within the legislation. This comes after Manchin received the endorsement of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) and publicly stated his support for EFCA, even signing a letter to Senate leadership. His most recent statements continue a bandwagon effect where candidates across the country are running away from union bosses.

In Colorado, after months and months of silence on his stance concerning the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act, Senator Michael Bennet finally stated he would not support the legislation. The Workforce Fairness Institute continues to put pressure on Bennet to solidify this stance by joining with other Colorado candidates who oppose EFCA’s specific provisions and put it in writing.

But why has there been this sudden trend of candidates publicly opposing EFCA? One look at the bill’s components and it’s not difficult to understand. Since its introduction into this Congress, the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act has been pushed as Big Labor’s number one priority, as it would increase unionization and put more dues into union boss coffers. But the damaging effects of this bill far outweigh any so-called benefits labor bosses are claiming.

First, EFCA would remove workers’ right to a secret ballot vote – what Manchin called “the most precious thing you own.” Secondly, it removes the right of workers to vote on contracts empowering government bureaucrats to force terms on employees and employers alike. And lastly, an economic study revealed that EFCA would lead to a loss of 600,000 jobs in the first year it is enacted. With unemployment hovering near ten percent, the last thing the country needs is a bill that will cost even more jobs.

These realities have hit home with voters. And the opposition from previous EFCA supporters isn’t exclusive to the Senate. Candidates for the U.S. House are also planting a firm foot in support of workers and against Big Labor. For instance, Representative Ron Klein, who not only voted for EFCA in 2007 but signed on as a co-sponsor in 2009, announced his opposition. His reason? Like so many new EFCA opponents, Klein has become a newfound, ardent supporter of the secret ballot.

With so many candidates coming clean to voters hours and days in advance of Election Day, the dynamics of the debate have certainly changed quite a bit. And while small businesses can take nothing for granted, we certainly have come a long way over the last two years.

Tell Congress: Stop the PRO Act

WFI is working to prevent passage of the so-called Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act)—a wholesale labor reform package that takes the current careful balance of labor rules and tips it greatly in the favor of labor bosses and forced collective bargaining.

The PRO Act robs workers of the right to a secret ballot to form a union, forces union contracts on workers without a vote of approval, and expose workers’ personal contact information to union bosses seeking to organize a workplace. And that’s just the start.

Help us speak out against this woefully misguided and blatantly anti-worker legislation. Review and send the message below to your members of Congress today.

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WFI Key Vote Letter: Opposition to PRO Act

— 02.10.2020 —
Dear Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader McCarthy: On behalf of the Workforce Fairness Institute (WFI), I am writing to share our organization’s vehement opposition to H.R. 2474, the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act). WFI has serious concerns with the broad, overreaching nature of this legislation and the many ways in which it would undermine worker freedom and privacy, while simultaneously threatening businesses and entire industries that keep America’s economy thriving. Please note that WFI will include votes on the PRO Act and its amendments on our Congressional Labor Scorecard, which scores and ranks legislators based on their activity associated with workplace issues. WFI was established to fight for American employees and employers as well as our entire economy. We believe in worker empowerment, the right of workers to be fully informed of the options available for worker-involvement in the workplace, and the right to freely choose whether to organize or not. No individual or group – government, a union or an employer – should be able to intimidate or restrict workers’ in exercising these rights. In an attempt to boost flailing union membership at the expense of workers’ rights, the PRO Act would upend decades of established U.S. labor law and institute myriad anti-employee and anti-employer policies that have already been soundly rejected—by Congress, various federal agencies, or the courts. Among its most blatant affronts to workers’ rights, the PRO Act would eliminate the right to a secret ballot when determining whether to unionize and enforce a “card check” system, exposing workers to the potential for harassment, intimidation, and coercion. The PRO Act would also enforce binding arbitration in union negotiations by a government- appointed bureaucrat; repeal and eliminate right-to-work laws in 27 states, force workers to fund union activities regardless of whether they support them; and threaten the ability of individuals to operate as independent contractors, eliminating traditional economic and employment opportunities and threatening the independence and flexibility of the emerging gig economy. On top of all that, the PRO Act would force all workers’ personal and home contact information to be provided to a union during organizing campaigns – in an electronic, searchable format no less, with no limit on what a union can do with that information. WFI believes in advancing sensible policies that protect and preserve the rights of both employees and employers, and we welcome the opportunity to work with legislators who also support these efforts. However, the PRO Act does not achieve these goals and would instead threaten the rights of both while jeopardizing our entire economy. WFI urges members of the House to strongly oppose the PRO Act. Sincerely, Heather Greenaway Executive Director Workforce Fairness Institute See the letter here.
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