|Jottings By An Employer's Lawyer|
Sunday, June 08, 2008
Ads, News Stories -- the Employee Free Choice Act is Serious Business
1. Senator Chris Dodd is generally credited as being the author of the FMLA. He wrote and introduced a version of it in 1986, six years before Bill Clinton ran for president and seven years before Clinton took office.That was two weeks and two days after his inauguration, a record that will be hard to top.
But there is no question that it is at the top of organized labor's agenda. That's why even during the legislative "off season" business group's are already running ads and unions are busy denouncing them. The NAM's blog, Shopfloor had an interesting report on the battle in Maine, Card Check: But What About the Substance? which also has a link to the ads themselves, click here.
Why Maine? My guess is that it's because that's where two moderate Republican senators, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins live. In this year's EFCA cloture vote, both Senator Snowe and Senator Collins voted against cloture. The vote was 51 - 48, which indicates that there is still a lot of work to go before EFCA will just sail through Congress.
However, Senator Collins is up for re-election and can't be too thrilled about having to talk about that vote in an election season where Senator Obama is almost sure to carry Maine.
That advertising about a specific piece of legislation is not only being run but fought over six months before it will likely be voted on again in Congress in the relatively small state of Maine gives you a hint about the stakes involved. Employers should take heed.