A Republican Opportunity

Pat McMahon Contributor
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In November, 2008, we entered an Orwellian world in which slavery has come to be called freedom. As you may remember, despite all of the efforts of Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid, Congress stopped short of passing the Employee Free Choice Act – a piece of legislation, sponsored by the AFL-CIO, which was aimed at denying employees a genuinely free choice via the secret ballot when it came to deciding whether to unionize their workplace or not. To his great credit, George McGovern emerged from the shadows to speak up against this proposal, and his opposition provided cover for those Democrats in the Senate who shared his misgivings.

Now, however, attempts are being made to smuggle in what is called “card check” through the back door. This is what many feared would happen when President Obama nominated Craig Becker to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), and that is why his appointment was blocked in the Senate. When the President responded by putting Becker temporarily on the board by way of a recess appointment, those concerns were renewed. In reading yesterday’s Washington Examiner, I learned that what everyone feared at that time has turned out to be true: that Becker and his colleagues are smuggling in “card-check” by the back door through rulings of the NLRB.

In a ruling issued last Tuesday, the process was begun. “In the decision, involving Dana Corp., the AFL-CIO and United Auto Workers,” we are told, “the NLRB upheld Card Check as a legal organizing tool so long as the employer and union organizers enter into a ‘letter of agreement’ in advance.”

What this means is that the employer and the union seeking to represent its employees can collude and in tandem do an end run around those employees, denying them the right of voting by secret ballot to determine whether they will be unionized or not. To be precise, if thugs employed by the union can by one means or another “persuade” a sufficient number of the firm’s employees to sign a card requesting unionization or prevent them from protesting that they did not sign the cards purportedly bearing their signatures, the union will spring into existence and everyone’s paycheck will be docked on its behalf.

Mitch McConnell and John Boehner should spring into action. They should hold a press conference and file a suit to have this ruling – which is not sanctioned by any law passed by Congress and involves a reversal of NLRB precedents – overturned. If denied standing, they should find someone employed by the Dana Corporation to bring the suit, and they should support it.

Moreover, in January, the two should introduce in Congress an Employee Bill of Rights stipulating that – in all votes involving unionization, the governance of unions, and decisions whether to accept or reject contracts and strike or not – the secret ballot be employed. The Republicans in the House can pass the bill and challenge the Democrats in the Senate to show what they are made of and vote against it. If Harry Reid manages to squelch the bill in that body, this will give the Republicans a stick with which to beat the Democrats in November, 2012. If McConnell and his colleagues can get it through the Senate, they can put Barack Obama on the spot.

In nearly everything they do in the course of the next two years, it should be the aim of the Republicans to complete the job begun by Obama, Pelosi, and Reid by fully unmasking the enemies of liberty and  revealing them as what they are.

Full story: A Republican Opportunity – Ricochet.com