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Secret Ballot Watch

Top Democrat Announces Summer Plans to Eliminate Secret Ballot for Workers

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 27, 2009 | Alexa Marrero ((202) 225-4527)
From the moment the 111th Congress was gaveled into session, one of the most pressing questions in Washington has been when Democrats would vote to eliminate secret ballot unionizing elections. With top labor bosses demanding card check as political payback for the millions they gave Democrats in the last election, it was only a matter of time until the bill would surface on Democrats’ legislative agenda. And sure enough, late last week the Senate’s top Democrat announced plans to take up the public union sign-up legislation this summer. 

 "Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said the Senate will likely turn its attention this summer to the Employee Free Choice Act — the union organizing bill being watched in Las Vegas and across the nation. …

"The union organizing bill, sometimes called card check, is an 'important piece of legislation,' he said. 'We’re going to get to that,' Reid said. 'We’re hoping to get to it sometime this summer.'"

Mascaro, “Reid: Vote on card check bill, a labor priority, likely in summer,” Las Vegas Sun, 01.27.09 

Editorial pages around the country have wasted no time in making clear exactly where the American people stand on this anti-worker measure. Day after day, editorialists, op-ed contributors, and community members have weighed in against this undemocratic plan, warning about everything from its negative economic consequences to its fundamentally unfair elimination of worker rights.

An opinion piece appearing today in Florida’s Lakeland Ledger is just the latest in a string of articles denouncing the card check plan, dubbed the Employee Free Choice Act by special interest supporters despite the fact that it takes away workers’ right to freely choose whether to join a particular union through a federally-supervised secret ballot election. 

"This legislation's ironic name is an attempt to hide the fact that it would remove employee choice and foster a variety of confrontational practices that would harm both workers and business owners.

"The centerpiece of EFCA is the weakening of workers' ability to vote by private ballot on whether or not a union should be formed, by allowing unions to replace private-ballot elections with a public card check system."

Wheeler, “Employee Free Choice Act Harmful,” Lakeland Ledger, 01.27.09  

No matter how loud the public outcry against the card check scheme, congressional Democrats and their special interest allies seem intent on taking away the secret ballot. Seems workers won’t have much to look forward to this summer.

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