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Unions seek exemption from LA minimum wage law they helped pass

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This is from Fox News Politics.

It is with the union thugs like their DemocRat thug allies a case of do as we say not as we do.

The rules we get passed only apply to others and never us.

 

Union leaders in Los Angeles are being accused of hypocrisy after being caught trying to exempt themselves from a new minimum wage law they tried to impose on others.

For months, organized labor went after companies like McDonalds and Walmart, shaming any business that paid the old minimum wage. Carrying signs saying, “We see greed” and “We are worth more,” union members marched outside businesses and appeared at City Council meetings demanding Los Angeles raise the minimum wage from $9 to $15 by 2020.

“We say, ‘Don’t leave anybody out, don’t cut anybody out, a wage raise for all workers!'” Mary Elena Durazo, the longtime leader of the 600,000-strong Los Angeles County Federation of Labor AFL-CIO, told a cheering crowd of supporters at a recent council meeting.

Yet after pushing through the new wage law, union officials are asking for a waiver that would allow any company that unionizes to avoid paying the minimum wage.

“It was a real surprise that in the 11th hour that labor was saying, ‘well, we basically support a sub-minimum wage if a company decides to enter into collective bargaining,'” Los Angeles City Councilman Mitch O’Farrell said. “And that really is a complete contradiction to what they’ve been saying the last couple of months.”

Councilmen Mike Bonin and O’Farrell are opposing the move.

“It is not acceptable to expect the L.A. City Council to become a vehicle for union organizing,” said O’Farrell. “That is not what we were elected to do and that is not what I will engage in.”

Bonin agreed, telling the Los Angeles Times, “For me, the point of the minimum wage in Los Angeles was to raise wages and lift [everyone] out of poverty.”

What especially angered opponents was unions’ attitude toward others who asked for waivers. Restaurants, nonprofits and businesses with fewer than 25 employees asked for a one-year delay. Unions opposed it, calling the ‘loophole’ unfair to the working poor.

Rusty Hicks — current president of the L.A. Federation of Labor, who replaced Durazo after she left to head a casino-and-hotel worker union — argued, “it is critical that no Angeleno, whether they’re workers or owners of small businesses and nonprofits, is left behind.”

But Wednesday night, Hicks changed his position, telling the council that workers who collectively bargain for wages below the minimum shouldn’t be penalized. He and labor attorney Margo Feinberg say federal law protects workers who choose collective bargaining.

“This is a standard clause to protect basic worker rights,” Hicks said in a statement.

He’s right. Minimum wage ordinances in Chicago, Milwaukee, Oakland, San Francisco and San Jose contain provisions similar to the one labor sought in Los Angeles. The municipal code in San Jose says, “all or any portion of the (ordinance) may be waived in a bona fide collective bargaining agreement.”

Business groups, however, claim it’s a blatant double standard.

“When unions do something like this, it demonstrates that their rhetoric about low wages is hollow,” said the National Federation of Independent Business’ Andrew Wimer. “They seem perfectly willing to see workers paid less if it means getting more power for themselves.”

“The unions are being too cute by half,” added Jot Condie of the California Restaurant Association. “They spent the last few months table-pounding against any exemptions or mitigations to the minimum wage increase — suggesting no one should get special treatment. Now it is clear they recognize the need for those mitigations and have asked for special treatment for themselves.”

O’Farrell said the law is likely to go through without any exemptions, though unions are expected to try again. The local AFL-CIO declined to answer questions submitted by Fox News.

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America’s top labor union bosses raked in millions in 2014

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This is by Jason Hart@ Watchdog.org. 

These union thugs are making hundreds of thousands or dollars and in some cases millions from dues extroted from workers.

Yet they claim the rich are evil and they the union thug bosses represent the little people.

 

Union bosses known for bashing the rich are often millionaires themselves, paid with dues taken from workers’ paychecks.

Laborers’ International Union of North America president Terry O’Sullivan, who was paid $670,403 in 2014, slammed  and other critics of big government in a speech last July.

“Today’s Republican party has been hijacked, poisoned and taken over by a bunch of Tea Party maggots,” O’Sullivan shouted. “These anti-union, anti-worker bastards are not only crazy, they’re mean!”

When it comes to taking a huge paycheck from workers he claims to protect, O’Sullivan is in good company. Leaders of the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, the International Association of Machinists and other powerful unions have done the same for years.

America’s union membership rate is in the midst of a decades-long decline, but labor union officials always seem to get paid. In 2013, 472 union officers and employees were paid more than $250,000 each.

Excluding the MLB Players Association and other unions representing professional athletes, 497 union officers and employees were paid more than $250,000 last year — not a bad haul for representatives of teachers, blue-collar workers and government employees.

Outside of the pro sports unions, 19 union bosses were paid more than $500,000 in 2014.

Some of the country’s top union officials work for specialized unions such as the Independent Pilots Association, and they represent predominantly high-income workers. Most do not.

In addition to O’Sullivan, the Laborers’ union paid 42 officers and employees more than $250,000 in 2014. How many officers and employees were paid more than $250,000 by the other construction unions?

  • United Association of Plumbers & Pipefitters: 56 union officers and employees paid more than $250,000 in 2014
  • International Union of Operating Engineers: 34
  • United Brotherhood of Carpenters: 28
  • International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers: 15
  • International Association of Machinists: 14
  • International Union of Painters & Allied Trades: 10

Outside of the construction industry, several other major unions paid more than 10 officers and employees more than a quarter-million dollars each in 2014.

United Food & Commercial Workers paid 40 union officials more than $250,000, International Longshoremen’s Association paid 17 officers and employees more than $250,000, and Transportation Communications Union paid 12 officers and employees more than $250,000.

America’s four largest unions — the National Education Association, Service Employees International Union, American Federation of Teachers and American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees — take taxpayer money from the paychecks of teachers and other public workers.

AFSCME paid 19 union officers and employees more than $250,000 last year. NEA had 10 officers and employees paid more than $250,000 each, while AFT had seven and SEIU had two.

In some cases, local union officials were paid even more than their national union counterparts.

AFSCME Local 3930 in San Diego paid finance director Gary Voice $680,721. UFCW Local 464 in New Jersey paid president John Niccollai $579,828.

In California, New Jersey and the 23 other states without right-to-work laws, workers can be forced to pay union bosses to have a job.

A list of America’s 100 highest-paid union bosses, filtered to exclude professional athletes’ unions, is included below. Payroll data come from the unions’ 2014 annual reports to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Name Total Pay, 2014 Union
William Trent $1,132,607 Independent Pilot Association
Donald Moak $825,539 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Jay Roth $824,475 Directors Guild Of America Inc
Ed Power $697,714 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
Gary Voice $680,721 State County & Muni Empls AFL-CIO Local Union 3930
Terence O’Sullivan $670,403 Laborers
Newton Jones $639,034 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
David P. White $586,079 SAG-AFTRA
John Niccollai $579,828 Food & Commercial Wkrs Local Union 464
Peter Hasho $574,501 Int’l Brotherhood Of Trade Unions
Robert Scardelletti $564,194 Transportation Communications Union/Iam, AFL-CIO
Rhonda Weingarten $557,875 Teachers AFL-CIO
Armand Sabitoni $556,140 Laborers
William Mcdonough $544,137 Food & Commercial Wkrs
Dennis Van Roekel $541,632 National Education Assoc.
William Hite $522,988 Plumbers AFL-CIO
Harold Daggett $515,901 Longshoremens Assoc. AFL-CIO
David Young $512,026 Writers Guild West
Joseph Maloney $501,392 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
Jonathan Cohen $498,255 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
T Warren Fairley, Jr. $493,007 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
Bruce York $489,852 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Kelly Richardson $489,330 Air Traffic Controllers AFL-CIO
James Callahan $488,377 Engineers, Operating, AFL-CIO
J Tom Baca $483,779 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
Joseph Nigro $479,268 Sheet Metal, Air, Rail And Transportation Workers
Lori Ames $467,010 United Service Workers Union, IUJAT
Edward Byrne Sr $462,057 United Service Workers Union, IUJAT
Matthew Loeb $459,616 Stage & Picture Operators AFL-CIO
Joseph Sellers $459,184 Sheet Metal, Air, Rail And Transportation Workers
Douglas J Mccarron $455,102 Carpenters
Stephen Knott $452,565 Longshoremens Assoc. AFL-CIO
Richard Johnson $449,716 Transportation Communications Union/Iam, AFL-CIO
Benny Holland Jr $440,759 Longshoremens Assoc. AFL-CIO
Joseph Mancinelli $439,072 Laborers
Lori Garver $438,167 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Jean Bruny $435,845 Food & Commercial Wkrs Local Union 888
William Roberts $435,377 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Mark Mcmanus $434,735 Plumbers AFL-CIO
Terrence Healy $432,918 Laborers
Paul Rinaldi $428,408 Air Traffic Controllers AFL-CIO
Lawrence Mcmanamon $420,733 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
Stephen Kelly $420,552 Plumbers AFL-CIO
Frank Bail $420,206 Retail Wholesale, Dc, Ufcw Local Union 1102
Edwin Hill $418,478 Electrical Workers Ibew AFL-CIO
Kenneth Rigmaiden $417,540 Painters AFL-CIO
John Previsich $414,408 Sheet Metal, Air, Rail And Transportation Workers
Betty Ginsburg $413,301 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Jon Davis $412,793 Laborers
John Stocks $412,398 National Education Assoc.
Sean Mcgarvey $411,878 Bldg & Constrn Trades Dept AFL-CIO
Jim Johnson $408,313 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Walter Wise $408,257 Iron Workers AFL-CIO
James Grogan $406,623 Insulators AFL-CIO
Phil Barbarello $405,532 Air Traffic Controllers AFL-CIO
Ana Mcahron-Schulz $402,568 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
John Telford $396,371 Plumbers AFL-CIO
Andris J Silins $393,009 Carpenters
Frank Hanley $390,553 Food & Commercial Wkrs Local Union 464
William Creeden $390,259 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
Ron Kutak $387,410 Stage & Picture Operators AFL-CIO Local Union 700
Patrick Finley $386,357 Plasterers & Cement Masons AFL-CIO
Joel Parker $386,184 Transportation Communications Union/Iam, AFL-CIO
Salvatore Chilia $384,120 Electrical Workers Ibew AFL-CIO
Tyler Brown $383,826 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
John Baker $379,569 Longshoremens Assoc. AFL-CIO
James Hoffa $379,411 Teamsters
Liz Koby $377,328 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Thomas Bethel $376,671 American Maritime Officers, SIUNA
Thomas Callahan $376,625 Engineers, Operating, AFL-CIO Local Union 15
Keith Hagy $375,542 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Michael Robbins $374,425 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Theodore Green $373,581 Laborers
Douglas Banes $372,562 Carpenters
Linda Canan Stephens $371,390 State County & Muni Empls AFL-CIO
Larry Cann $371,236 Plumbers AFL-CIO
Gerald Owens $370,212 Longshoremens Assoc. AFL-CIO
Murray Morrissey $367,740 Retail Wholesale, Dc, Ufcw Local Union 338
David Krieger $367,433 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Joseph Senese $367,314 National Production Wkrs Union
John Penn $366,266 Laborers
Liberato Naimoli $365,588 Laborers Local Union 76
Randy Sowell $363,409 Carpenters
Russell Hollander $363,192 Directors Guild Of America Inc
Joseph Hansen $362,814 Food & Commercial Wkrs
Patricia Gilbert $362,165 Air Traffic Controllers AFL-CIO
James Mccourt $360,739 Insulators AFL-CIO
Robert Richardson $360,469 Laborers
William Hopkins $359,653 Food & Commercial Wkrs Local Union 455
Jeffrey Small $356,529 Air Line Pilots Assoc. AFL-CIO
Vincent Masino $355,905 Laborers
Ralph Cole $355,722 Laborers District Council
Richard Whalen $354,266 Food & Commercial Wkrs Local Union 464
David Dale Haggerty, Jr. $354,236 Boilermakers AFL-CIO
Lillian Roberts $352,341 State County & Muni Empls AFL-CIO District Council 37
Lorretta Johnson $352,307 Teachers AFL-CIO
Kinsey Robinson $352,302 Roofers AFL-CIO
Raymond Pocino $352,297 Laborers
Dennis Martire $352,122 Laborers
Earl Hurd $351,928 Plasterers & Cement Masons AFL-CIO

Union Membership Rate Falls to 100-Year Low

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This is from The Daily Signal.

It will be no loss if the unions just fade away.

Look at the trouble Detriot is in due to the unions.

Look at the problems the UAW has caused the big three auto makers.

 

New information from the federal government suggests workers’ interest in unions continues to fall, with union membership reaching its lowest rate in 100 years.

According to data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics today, the union membership rate fell to 11.1 percent, with just 14.6 million wage and salaried workers maintaining membership.

In 2013, the union membership rate was 0.2 percentage points higher, at 11.3 percent.

The rate of union membership has been on a steady decline over the past three decades. It grew slightly from 12.1 percent in 2007 to 12.4 percent in 2008. During President Obama’s first year in office, however, it fell once more.

Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO, said in a statement today that though there has been job growth over the past 58 months, many of the jobs created do not provide fair wages.

“A strong recovery must be built on family-sustaining, not poverty-level jobs,” he said. “Today’s news confirms what most of us already knew: workers are finding good union jobs despite political ideologues—and jobs are coming back as the economy slowly rebounds, but neither are nearly enough.”

>>> Fact Checking Obama’s Jobs Claims in State of the Union

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the rate of union membership for public-sector workers last year was 35.7 percent, compared to just 6.6 percent for the private sector.

Of those working in the public sector, government had the highest union membership rate.

James Sherk, a labor economics policy economist at The Heritage Foundation, told The Daily Signal that the drop in the rate of union membership can likely be attributed to the antiquated union model.

“They’re selling a product that hasn’t changed that much since the 1930s when America’s labor laws were founded,” he said. “Today’s workers simply aren’t that interested in purchasing what unions have to sell.”

Sherk said that unions have failed to modernize over time and noted that workers are moving away from joining because their contracts are no longer relevant.

Trumka disagreed.

“Today’s release of the annual union membership numbers by the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that in this economic recovery, people are either seeking out good union jobs or taking matters into their own hands by forming unions to raise wages and ensure that new jobs are good jobs,” he said in his statement.

Seven union front groups fighting labor reform this year

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This is by  Jason Hart@ Watchdog.org.

I hope I live to see unions finally get shut down for good.

I have belonged to three different unions in my life, not one gave a damn about the workers just the dues money they shake down workers for.

 

Watch for union bosses to fight state labor reforms using pseudo-grassroots front groups this year, though the tactic has seen mixed results.

Right-to-work, loathed by labor bosses because it enables workers to choose whether to pay a union, is seen as a possibility in Wisconsin, Ohio, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Missouri and West Virginia in 2015. Several states are considering paycheck protection, which prevents using taxpayer resources to collect union dues.

In 2011, government unions created We Are Wisconsin and We Are Ohio to spin government union reforms as attacks on workers. Unions failed to block Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s Act 10 but successfully overturned Ohio Senate Bill 5 in a referendum against the law limiting public union power.

Act 10 did not apply to public safety workers, so Wisconsin remains one of 23 states where some or all government workers can be forced to pay a union as a condition of employment. Workers in the private sector can be forced to pay unions in 26 states.

In addition to We Are Wisconsin, leftist groups including Service Employees International Union front Wisconsin Jobs Now are helping union coalition AFL-CIO in its Badger State campaign against right-to-work.

Photo credit: MacIver Institute NOVAK: MacIver Institute Communications Director Nick Novak Photo credit: MacIver Institute

 

“Right-to-Work will be good for Wisconsin’s workers, businesses and its families. This policy simply gives workers the freedom to choose whether or not they want to be in a union,” Nick Novak, communications director for Wisconsin’s free-market MacIver Institute, said in an email to Watchdog.org.

“While unions and their front groups will likely push back against any policy that challenges the status quo, the state’s policymakers have shown they have the courage to stand up to special interests and support what is best for Wisconsin,” Novak continued.

Whether legislators in other states are willing to face smear campaigns from unions and leftists reliant on union largesse is yet to be seen.

With help from union-funded politicians and activist groups, unions strive to create the appearance of broad opposition to labor reform. A national “Right to Work is wrong for everyone” campaign is being led by Jobs With Justice, an AFL-CIO front with affiliates in 22 states and the District of Columbia.

AFL-CIO activist group American Rights at Work was folded into Jobs With Justice in 2012. Unions contributed more than $1.5 million to Jobs With Justice and its affiliates in 2012, and gave the nonprofit more than $1.9 million in 2013.

National Education Association, SEIU and AFL-CIO set the union script nationwide by calling right-to-work extreme, unfair and even unsafe — a message legacy media reporters broadcast with assertions right-to-work is an attack on collective bargaining.

“Left-leaning unions will try to paint this policy as ‘union bashing,’ but nothing could be further from the truth,” Novak told Watchdog.org. “States with RTW laws have seen better economic growth than non-RTW states, and union membership has actually increased in RTW states at the same time it has declined in non-RTW states.”

“Workers deserve a choice when it comes to joining a union, and that is exactly what RTW does,” he added. “No one should be forced to join an organization they don’t want to — they should be given a choice — and this policy gives workers that choice.”

We Are Ohio, calling itself a “citizen-driven, community-based bipartisan coalition,” has received 96 percent of more than $40 million in total funding from unions. Roughly half of We Are Ohio’s funding has come from union bosses in Washington, D.C.

Ohio legislators hoping to advance right-to-work for both the public and private sectors are up against fellow Republicans —including Gov. John Kasich — who are frightened of or friendly with union bosses. Many Ohio Republicans get campaign contributions from unions.

Kasich was endorsed for re-election last fall by several private-sector unions, including International Union of Operating Engineers Local 18. IUOE Local 18 runs Keep Ohio’s Heritage, a propaganda shop funded with $1 million from IUOE headquarters in D.C.

The Committee to Protect MO Families calls itself “a growing broad-based coalition of organizations and individuals who have come together to oppose so-called ‘Right to Work’ efforts in Missouri” and was created in 2013 by Carpenters’ District Council of Greater St. Louis & Vicinity.

We Are Missouri, “a diverse coali­tion of workers, stu­dents, seniors and their fam­i­lies,” is led by the Missouri AFL-CIO and funded by AFL-CIO headquarters in D.C.

 

Unions lash out at ObamaCare regs

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This is from The Hill.

Be careful of what you wish for you just might just get it.

The Union Thugs got their wish for Obamacare now Obamacare is now biting them on their fat thug asses. 

 

Leaders of major labor unions say they are “bitterly disappointed” with the regulatory changes made to ObamaCare, arguing they do little to help workers who are suffering under the law.

In a letter dated Monday, leaders of major unions told Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) that proposed regulations for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would do nothing to help union health plans.

 

“If the administration honestly thinks that these proposed rules are responsive to our concerns, they were not listening or they simply did not care,” read the letter from Terry O’Sullivan, president of the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA), and D. Taylor, president of Unite Here.

They said the administration has failed to address their concerns about worker health plans, and the healthcare law threatens to lower living standards for the working class.

“It would be a sad irony if the signature legislative accomplishment of an administration committed to reducing income inequality cut living standards for middle income and low wage workers,” the labor leaders wrote.

O’Sullivan and Taylor suggested that Labor Secretary Thomas Perez, in a recent letter to some lawmakers, might have misled lawmakers to believe that the new rules have addressed unions’ concerns about the healthcare law.

“That letter has been construed by some to suggest that the very serious concerns of ‘Taft-Hartley’ multi-employer health and welfare trust funds and other non-profit self-funded plans with the ACA has been addressed,” Taylor and O’Sullivan said in the letter. “This is simply not true regardless of the secretary’s good intentions.”

A Labor Department spokesman noted that the regulations in question are open for comment and said the department welcomes input from the public.

Unions have been clashing with the administration for months over the healthcare law’s impact on multi-employer health plans, which by some estimates, are held by roughly 20 million people.

The administration decided that the healthcare law does not provide tax subsidies for the Taft-Hartley plans. But union officials argue that interpretation could force their members to lose their insurance plans, which are nonprofit and thus receive a tax break, and be forced to buy more expensive coverage in the state-run exchanges.

In addition, unions have bristled at several of the law’s taxes and fees on their members’ health plans, including a reinsurance fee that will tax health plans from 2014-2016 to help stabilize the individual market as more sick patients come on board.

Other unions, such as the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and the Teamsters, have also spoken out against ObamaCare.

Many unions threw their full weight behind the reform law when it first passed in 2010. Since then, labor leaders have tried to work with the White House on shaping the ACA but to no avail.

“Once we realized the ACA would not let us keep the health care we had, we spent three years presenting the administration with reasonable fixes to the ACA’s problems. All of them were rejected and the proposed regulations offer virtually no assistance toward any of these solutions,” said the union leaders in their letter.

The dispute over ObamaCare has created a rift between the White House and unions, the Democrats’ traditional political allies.

In September, the AFL-CIO passed a harshly worded resolution at its convention in Los Angeles that criticized several aspects of ObamaCare. That measure was fiercely debated by labor leaders and was passed despite an effort by the White House to stop it in its tracks.

In October, the administration proposed regulations that could waive the reinsurance fee for self-administered health plans in 2015 and 2016, though not 2014.

Republicans attacked the new rules as a “bailout” for the administration’s political allies. GOP lawmakers have also touted union complaints, as they have worked to roll back the healthcare law.

Business groups have problems with the law as well and have lobbied against the reinsurance fee. Last year, a loose coalition of industry associations and labor unions, including LIUNA and Unite Here, formed to support legislation that would end the fee.

Read more: http://thehill.com/blogs/regwatch/healthcare/196861-unions-lash-out-at-obamacare-regs#ixzz2ru0n7eY6
Follow us: @thehill on Twitter | TheHill on Facebook

AFL-CIO tries to regroup as American support for unions declines

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This is from Fox News Politics.

One reason for the unions decline is union officials greed.

Workers are tried of paying dues to finance the union leaders lavish

trips and life style.

 

It was an unexpected and blunt admission by one of the nation’s most powerful labor leaders: “We are in crisis, and we have to do things differently,” AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka told USA Today last week.

His candid assessment heralds a change in strategy for the one-time labor giant.  It is now seeking to partner with other left-leaning organizations such as the NAACP and the Sierra Club to bolster its influence, and its lagging membership.

The idea would have been heretical in an earlier time when such partnerships meant solidarity under the union label and the obligation of union dues.

Under Trumka’s plan, there is no expectation that new AFL-CIO partners would join the federation.

“Hopefully, sometime,” Trumka told the paper. “First they’ll be partners at the local level. They’ll actually be in the structure of the local labor movement in some places but it will vary.” And as for paying union dues?

“Well, some may, some may not,” Trumka said.

If the strategy smacks of desperation, Cato Institute Senior fellow Chris Edwards says it should come as no surprise.

“Americans have rejected unionism,” Edwards says. “Particularly young people. If you look at the overall unionization rate, it’s seven percent but among young people, it’s just four percent which is remarkable.”

There is no single reason for labor’s precipitous decline. Technology and automation have decimated the ranks of blue-collar assembly workers.So has globalization and abundant cheap labor in the rapidly industrialized third world.

But some of labor’s wounds are self-inflicted. As it has turned to the public sector to make up for its private sector losses, unions have won increasingly generous pay and pension benefits. Those pension benefits are part of the reason that Detroit was forced into bankruptcy this summer, and why other cities are nearing the precipice of financial insolvency.

The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday documented the predicament of Chicago, where nine of ten city employees are unionized.  “Chicago has chronically under funded its pensions,” The Journal said.

Chicago’s pension liability grows year by year and reveals a wound that unions inflicted on themselves: electing Democrats to office who legislate favors for the unions which, in turn, finance the campaigns of their legislative enablers.

That cycle recently resulted in Mayor Rahm Emanuel laying off 2,100 Chicago education employees – 1,000 teachers among them.

 

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/08/13/afl-cio-tries-to-regroup-as-american-support-for-unions-declines/#ixzz2buH8foU8

 

Trumka Promises More than 2,000 Union ‘Poll Monitors’ in Battleground States

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This is from CNSNews.

These union goons will cause voter intimidation and voter suppression.

States should treat these thugs like the U.N.observers and arrest them if need be.

But sadly states like Ohio are intimidated by these union thugs.

We need to break these thugs strangle hold on companies and states.

 

(CNSNews.com) – AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said his unions plan to have 2,000 “poll monitors” in states such as Ohio, who will be linked with lawyers around the country as a way to prevent voter suppression.

During a media conference call on Thursday, Trumka recalled being at an early voting site in Las Vegas where he saw “challengers inside,” and said AFL-CIO will have poll monitor “rapid response teams” at voting sites.

“We’re going to have over 2,000 people that are going to be available as poll monitors that’ll be connected to a number of lawyers around the country. So that if they [the opposition] attempt to deny them the right to vote, or hassle them we’ll be able to have a rapid response team that will respond immediately to that and protect them,” Trumka said.

 

“That will be up in the core states like Ohio where we think there could be problems and so we’ll challenge those everywhere we can and protect the votes,” he said.

Trumka said AFL-CIO has a call-in number for voters to report instances of voter suppression.

“We’re encouraging people to report any problems to our 1866-OUR-VOTE number,” he said. “We want to ensure that working family voters know how to get information about elections in their state as well as who to call if they have trouble on Election Day.”

Also on the call was AFL-CIO Political Director Michael Podhorzer, who along with Trumka discussed AFL-CIO’s final campaign efforts leading up to Election Day, particularly in battleground states such as Ohio.

 

Union leader strives to ease Obama’s “white guy problem”

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This is from Reuters.

Will the AFL-CIO thugs be breaking the legs of Republican voters?

What will happen to the union members that vote Republican.

I was one of the union Republican voters.

I went to the union meetings and listened to the BS.

There were several Republicans in my local.

The DemocRats and the unions are getting desperate.

(Reuters) – President Barack Obama made history in his 2008 election victory as the first black U.S. president, but he risks achieving another, less welcome, first if he wins again in November.

Obama is on course to become the candidate with the lowest support from white male working class voters to win a U.S. election if he triumphs over Republican Mitt Romney on November 6.

Polls show support for Obama from white males without college degrees at under 30 percent, well below the 39 percent he had when he defeated Republican John McCain four years ago. While he has overwhelming support from Hispanics and blacks and does well among women, the Democratic president needs to shore up his backing among those men.

Richard Trumka, the most powerful U.S. union leader and an important bridge between the White House and blue-collar America, sees two solutions to Obama’s problems: mount labor’s largest voter outreach effort ever, and keep up the attacks on Romney’s business record.

“We’re absolutely going to do good work on the ground, mobilizing workers. We will have 400,000 volunteers this cycle,” Trumka, a former coal miner who is president of the 12-million-member AFL-CIO, the largest U.S. labor federation, told Reuters.

“We’ll be involved in 32 battleground states, up and down the ballot from Barack Obama, the House races, the Senate races, the state house and senate races,” he said.

The union’s main focus will be six states – Pennsylvania, Ohio, Nevada, Wisconsin, Michigan and Florida – where polls show the presidential race is close. In the 2008 election, more than 250,000 union volunteers took to the streets.

Trumka said constant ads and speeches by Obama’s campaign targeting former executive Romney’s business record and refusal to release more than two years of tax returns should win over more working-class men.

“A lot of arguments are going to resonate with our members,” Trumka said in an interview during a trip to Las Vegas to speak at union conventions. “Outsourcing because they know that he was the leader, his firms were the leader, in outsourcing. That will have a big, big jog.”

And he said blue-collar workers, who are fighting for their jobs and benefits in a difficult economy, will be outraged over Romney’s refusal to release more tax returns.

The AFL-CIO does not break down its membership by race, but the majority of its members are white and more men belong to unions than women.

“The fact that he has offshore secret bank accounts will fly with our members, because they’ll assume that he’s taking advantage of those tax loopholes and doing it offshore and that’s why he won’t give the tax returns,” Trumka said.

Unions, already battling Republican state governments trying to curtail their negotiating rights, are throwing everything they can at the 2012 election.

Thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision that lifted many campaign restrictions, union organizers this year can spend union funds to try to politically influence the general public. Worker’s Voices, the AFL-CIO’s Super PAC, will take advantage of the ruling to send volunteers to knock on doors, urging votes for Obama.

SLIGHT SHIFT SIGNIFICANT

“Will we get every one of them? No. But will we make a difference in our areas? Yes, we will. Voting for their own economic interests generally trumps any kind of clichés, hidden agendas or anything else. They vote in their own economic interest,” Trumka said.

A Reuters/Ipsos poll last week showed that constant criticism by the Obama campaign and its allies of Romney’s business tenure and personal finances may be harming the Republican’s ratings.

More than one-third of registered voters said that what they had heard about Romney’s taxes and his time at Bain Capital, which critics say was responsible for sending a number of U.S. jobs overseas, had given them a less favorable impression of him.

But the former Massachusetts governor has a huge lead with non-college-educated males in other polls.

Romney regularly bashes “union bosses” as he campaigns and he also has been hammered by Democrats for opposing Obama’s rescue of the U.S. auto industry.

“There’s no reason that there should be a white male, or a white, voter gap,” said Trumka, who called the auto rescue “a magnificent thing.”

A Washington Post survey last month showed Romney ahead by 65-28 percent among male voters who had not attended college, while a Quinnipiac University poll had him leading with 56 percent and the Democrat with 29 percent of that group, down from 32 percent earlier this year.

That compares to the 39 percent that Obama won in 2008. High unemployment now harms Obama with whites in Rust Belt states, but even in his historic election victory four years ago non-college-educated white men were Obama’s weakest demographic.

He is not alone among Democrats in struggling with what used to be some of the party’s core voters. But with white male voters’ share of the electorate dropping, Obama can still win the election if his numbers rise in that group even by a relatively small amount.

“Obama doesn’t need to carry the white working class vote, but he doesn’t want to lose it overwhelmingly,” said Herb Asher, a political scientist at Ohio State University. “If you have a close election, and it makes a small difference, that’s the difference between defeat and victory.”.

Republicans have triumphed among white working class males for more than three decades, partly by making the most of cultural differences with Democrats on issues like abortion rights, gun control and affirmative action.

But Romney has had his own troubles with working class male voters. He routinely lost them during the primaries, as his fellow Republicans accused him of being a “vulture capitalist.”

A Gallup poll this month found that one in five voters – including one in five independents – was less likely to vote for Romney because of his wealth. And the Obama campaign has stressed the Democrat’s bailout of U.S. automobile makers, which they said saved thousands of jobs.

Doug Ripple, 45, an Insulators’ union member from Dayton, Ohio, said he knew people who had doubts about Obama, after years of struggling in the weak economy. But he said Romney seemed too much in favor of the rich to win his vote. “Obama’s for the working class. We’re not billionaires.”

A quarter of AFL-CIO members did not vote for Obama in 2008.

“Some of this I think was pure racism,” said Trumka. “Some of them would be gun owners, some of them would be right-wing. Some of them would be … died-in-the-wool Republicans.”

Democrats acknowledge that Obama is unlikely to capture the white male vote, but say he can be re-elected if he minimizes the damage because of his huge edge with black and Hispanic voters.

In 2008, whites accounted for about three-quarters of U.S. voters, blacks represented about 12 percent, Hispanics about 7.5 percent and Asians 2.5 percent. The percentage of minority voters is expected to be greater this year.

Obama easily won the White House in 2008 despite his relatively weak support from whites. But his campaign is trying to keep him from slipping more with white working class voters by persistently depicting Romney as an out of touch elitist.

“What you do is, you make Romney a space alien,” said Jeremy Mayer of George Mason University in Virginia, by defining him as a man who outsources jobs to China and hides his money overseas.

“If you can make Romney look like the guy who is firing the white working class, then you can stop the bleeding,” he said.

 

AFL-CIO Demands ‘Second Bill of Rights’–Including ‘Rights’ to ‘Full Employment,’ ‘Living Wage,’ ‘Healthy Future’

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This is from CNSNews.

Little Dickie Trumka say he demands a Second Bill of rights.

Well Dickie boy you are not in any position to make any demands.

Your unions are slowly being weeded out of businesses.

Unions squeeze the life out of a company while you get rich.

People are tired of paying dues that end up in DemocRat coffers.

Your business destroying days are getting numbered.

(CNSNews.com) – AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka says his organization is pushing for a ‘Second Bill of Rights” for the United States of America.

The first Bill of Rights, sponsored by Jamed Madison in the U.S. House of Representatives, protected, among other things, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press, the free exercisie of religion, the right to keep and bear arms, the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures, and the right not to have one’s private property taken by the government unless for a public use and with just compensation.

Trumka and the AFL-CIO are calling for a new bill of rights that would guarantee “full employment,” a “living wage,” and a “healthy future.”

Under the current system, Americans are free to create businesses, and thus jobs, and to freely compete for workers with the wages and benefits they can afford and wish to offer. As America is currently constituted, Americans who do not start their own businessess but nonetheless want to work are free to work for any business that will hire them, or not work for a business they do no wish to work for. Americans are also free to negotiate–including collectively in labor unions–for whatever wages and benefits they can get.

Under a “Second Bill of Rigths” as proposed by the AFL-CIO, it is unclear how the government would guarantee a “right” to “full employment,” a “living wage” and a “healthy future.”

Trumka intends to push both the Democrats and Republicans “the Second Bill of Rights” at their national conventions this summer.

“America’s Second Bill of Rights is a broad-based statement of what the American people need and what they deserve. If some of it sounds redundant, it is because we once took many of these rights for granted,” Trumka said last Thursday at the National Press Club.

Trumka was joined by Edwin D. Hill, president of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, to announce the “Workers Stand with America” rally in Philadelphia, Pa., on August 11. The event is intended to “refocus attention on the needs of middle class working Americans and to urge elected officials and leaders from both parties and every part of the nation to stand with them.”

“We plan to put new energy behind insisting that the power structure in America pay attention to the needs of the men and women whose labor drives this country,” Trumka said.

He outlined five main tenets of the Second Bill of Rights, which, in addition to the “right to full employment and a living wage,” and “the right to a secure and healthy future,” also includes the “right to full participation in the electoral process,” the “right to a quality education”; and the “right to a voice at work.”

The idea of a Second Bill of Rights was inspired by President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1944 State of the Union address, which called for greater “economic rights” including employment through a living wage, collective bargaining, housing, education, medical care, among many things.

Hill said that Big Labor will pressure both major political parties to add this Second Bill of Rights to their respective party platforms.

“Republicans and Democrats need to hear what people are saying, and to break through the gridlock and the attacks on the rights of workers at all levels of the government,” Hill said.

He added: “We want to hold all the leadership positions, hold everyone in leadership positions and that includes private and both public sectors, accountable to the American people.”

Trumka, meanwhile, tried to downplay the fact that the “movement” is union-led, saying he welcomes non-union participants who share the same goals as the union organizers.

“This is not a union bill of rights. And our campaign and our rally on August 11 is not just for union members,” said Trumka. “Are you with us? Are you with the Second Bill of Rights?”

Earlier that morning, Hill met with Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), who agreed to speak at the August 11 event and support the cause. No Republican has agreed to support the Second Bill of Rights or speak at the “Workers Stand with America” event at this time.

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