State legislators are unhappy about the prospect of the so-called Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) being imposed on their constituents’ businesses. That was a central theme of a news teleconference today, featuring former Labor Secretary Elaine Chao and Senator John Thune (R-S.D.), hosted by the Alliance for Worker Freedom. The bill would allow unions to circumvent secret ballot elections in organizing campaigns.
Seven state legislatures have passed resolutions opposing EFCA — Alabama, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Georgia, and Washington — and eight have had resolutions introduced — Idaho, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Alaska — with possibly more to come.
As Grover Norquist, president of American for Tax Reform, noted, these resolutions, by forcing a vote on the EFCA issue, put legislators on the record, which allows voters to better know where they stand on this.
Former Secretary Chao pointed out the stakes in this fight. “This is the most heated and passionate issue for organized labor,” she said. One reason for that is that, unlike during the last Congress, EFCA faces no threat of a presidential veto. Therefore, she noted, moderate Democrats could vote for EFCA during the last Congress and thus keep their union supporters happy without any fear of the bill’s real-world consequences, but they don’t have it so easy this time, as they’re firing “with real bullets.”