Electronic Voting Would Lead To Forced Unionization

Katie Packer
June 19, 2010

Earlier this year, when President Obama went around Congress and used his executive power to recess appoint labor radical Craig Becker to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), we were watching and like many in the small business community, took note and voiced opposition.

Big Labor’s agenda of enacting the Employee ‘Forced’ Choice Act (EFCA) wasn’t seeing much traction in Congress and union bosses were finding other ways to push their plans through, like getting the former American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) lawyer recess appointed.

All the while, the small business community expressed deep reservations about Becker due to his writings and public comments stating a fervent belief that employers should have no say, no rights whatsoever in the unionization process. He even expressed support for federal policies that disregarded the rights of workers and small business owners, only acknowledging those of union bosses.

And now that Becker has been on the NLRB for a few months, we are seeing the first step from the agency in enacting the forced unionization policies its newest member advocated on behalf of.

Big Labor has turned its sights onto creating “electronic voting services” in union representation elections. A request for information was just issued by the NLRB concerning these voting systems, which would remove paper ballot voting monitored at a worksite and replace it with electronic voting taking place at some other location.

It seems obvious that trading NLRB-supervised elections using physical ballots at a worksite with electronic voting, which could take place offsite, would open workers to coercion and intimidation at the hands of union bosses and organizers.

What is plainly clear is that this introduction of electronic voting is the first glimmer that Big Labor is using Becker and the NLRB to enact portions of EFCA just as they intended.

Before Obama appointed Becker, labor bosses wrote, “It [sic] we aren’t able to pass the Employee Free Choice Act, we will work with President Obama and Vice President Biden and their appointees to the National Labor Relations Board to change the rules governing forming a union through administrative action…”

It appears Becker’s NLRB has commenced with doing just that. Electronic voting exposes workers to individual “attention,” which clearly translates into bullying.

You don’t have to look far to see how the purple shirts of the SEIU continue to use intimidation and harassing tactics to get their way – and this would only increase with electronic voting.

After all, Big Labor named EFCA as their top priority for this Congress. Anything that helps them get new members is part of the agenda, irrespective of what it would mean for employees and employers.

By removing the rights of workers in the unionization process through a forced public vote, EFCA would make union boss intimidation and coercion simpler and commonplace. Additionally, EFCA would expose small businesses to government regulation on a very direct level. Appointing a government arbitrator to interfere with contract negotiations, EFCA would give sole authority of wages and benefit decisions to this government bureaucrat who would set the terms for two years with no appeals process. Called binding arbitration, this aspect of the bill could put such unreasonable terms onto a small business that it could be forced to shut down or move overseas.

So, with little progress on getting EFCA to see any action on the floor of the U.S. House or Senate, Big Labor has set its sights on the NLRB.

So why does Big Labor want to threaten workers, bankrupt small businesses and manhandle our system of government? Simple: power and money.

As union bosses have squandered the wealth that members’ dues provided them, numerous national unions are suddenly finding that their pension plans have been so mismanaged and grossly under-funded, that they are in serious trouble. In response, they are turning to the Obama Administration for bailouts – both financially and politically. By coercing workers to join unions through systems such as electronic voting, labor bosses will be able to rake in more dues and replenish their members’ pension funds, which they have squandered.

Let’s hope that the NLRB doesn’t continue down this wayward path, which is sure to lead to increased economic instability and job loss. Once again, we will be watching and objecting.

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AZ Daily Sun--Coconino Voices: PRO Act legislation would hurt local businesses

— 05.13.2021 —
By: Julie Pastrik Arizona businesses and workers have had an incredibly challenging year given the economic slowdown that followed in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. However, local businesses and industries across the state are resilient and on the road to a strong recovery that will mean more jobs for Arizona workers and increased economic development to strengthen our communities. That is, as long as Congress does not move forward with potentially devastating legislation that would hurt local employers and employees alike while impeding our state’s economic recovery. Unfortunately, some members of Congress seem determined to do just that by pushing through the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act. As harmless as the name may sound, the PRO Act would have serious repercussions for local businesses, particularly smaller ones, while undermining long-standing rights for employees and threatening the growing gig economy that has helped provide much-needed income for so many during this time. Arizona is fortunate to have leaders like Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema, who have both refrained from joining the vast majority of their Democratic colleagues in cosponsoring the PRO Act. In a slap in the face to Arizona workers, the PRO Act removes one of the most fundamental rights a worker has when it comes to voting in elections to determine whether to unionize: the secret ballot. Instead, workers could be forced to sign union authorization cards in front of other employees, their employer, or union organizers. This bill would also destroy workers’ right to privacy by allowing unions access to personal information, including their home address and personal phone number. If that doesn’t open the door to union intimidation and harassment, I don’t know what does. As if that was not bad enough, the PRO Act would create major new challenges for Arizona businesses, making it harder for them to create jobs, expand in their communities, and even keep their doors open. It would redefine what it means to be a “joint employer” under national labor law, greatly complicating existing relationships between franchisors and franchisees as well as between business owners, contractors, subcontractors, and vendors and suppliers. At the same time, it would interfere with attorney-client confidentiality and make it much more difficult for small businesses to secure a legal advice on labor issues. Particularly harmful during these times, the PRO Act would apply a failed policy from California to national labor law by using the “ABC” test to determine whether a worker is an independent contractor or employee. This makes it much harder to qualify as an independent contractor, threatening the freedom and flexibility that tens of thousands of Arizonans find in independent contracting and gig economy work. Ultimately, the PRO Act is bad public policy that only works for union leaders to inflate their falling ranks while threatening workers’ rights, undermining small businesses, and jeopardizing a growing part of our economy. This is not a good solution for Arizona, and Senators Sinema and Kelly should stay firm and not cosponsor this misguided legislation.
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