USA Today has an editorial opposing a massive proposed bailout for the automakers. The automakers would be leaner, more efficient, and more able to survive in the long run if they filed for bankruptcy in order to abrogate their absurdly generous union contracts, rather than being bailed out by taxpayers to the tune of tens of billions of dollars. Airlines keep operating all the time after filing for bankruptcy. By contrast, when England bailed out its automakers in the 1970s, at great cost, the results were disastrous and unsuccessful. But the unions want Obama to support a costly taxpayer bailout of the automakers, and so he is pushing for it. Given the union-backed incoming Democratic Congress, he’ll likely get it. But Declan McCullagh explains why bailing out Detroit is a dumb idea.
The Democrats are approaching a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, having apparently picked up the Alaska Senate seat they seemed to have lost on election day. They already have 57 Senate seats, but will pick up at least one, and perhaps as many as three, additional seats. They may pick up an additional seat in Minnesota, as a result of voter fraud, as the Wall Street Journal explained yesterday. (We previously chronicled suspicious occurrences in the vote-counting process, which is overseen by an official with ties to MoveOn.Org and the left-wing group ACORN, which has a history of voter fraud and financial fraud).
The Democrats also may pick up an additional seat from a special election: a run-off election is slated for December 3 in Georgia, where neither the Democrat nor the Republican got the 50 percent of the vote required by state law.
More importantly, they have apparently picked up an additional seat in Alaska, where the Republican incumbent, who appeared to have won on election day, has steadily lost ground as more absentee ballots are counted. (Even if he had won, there would have been a special election, in light of his recent conviction for failing to report gifts, which would have led to his colleagues ordering him to resign or be expelled).
If the Democrats get a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, they’ll pass so-called “card-check” legislation, abolishing the secret ballot in elections over whether to unionize a workplace. Obama has backed card-check legislation, which could lead to intimidation and bullying aimed at employees who do not want to work in a union shop.