GOP Launches Offensive on Pro-Union Bill

Big business is paying big bucks to lobby against 'card check' bill
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 9, 2009 2:28 PM CDT
State GOP Chairman Saul Anuzis, seen in Dearborn, Mich., Oct. 8, 2007, was picked up by Newt Gingrich’s American Solutions lobbying firm to run operations.   (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
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(Newser) – Republican lobbyists are swarming Capitol Hill this week, launching the battle over the pro-union Employee Free Choice Act—a fight one Chamber of Commerce exec describes as "Armageddon." Legions of GOP operatives are being enlisted to spend tens of millions of dollars offered by large corporations like Wal-Mart, Politico reports, to oppose the bill that would make it easier for workers to unionize and press for higher wages.

Under the measure, a workplace would go union if a majority of workers signed cards supporting it, without an election. The bill would also force employers to accept binding arbitration if a contract isn't achieved promptly through bargaining. The campaign is being positioned as staving off what one Bush administration vet calls  “a complete and radical rewriting of labor laws to effectively remove any employer control over the workplace and put it in the hands of the unions.”