Thursday, March 05, 2009

Will the Democrats introduce "card check" legislation next week? 

The Morgan Lewis law firm is reporting "rumors" that the Democrats are going to introduce the Orwellian "Employee Free Choice Act" (which involves taking away the right of employees to vote on whether they want to unionize their place of work) on March 9. There is, apparently, considerable risk that the Republicans do not have the votes to avoid cloture on a filibuster in the Senate (emphasis added).

Passage of EFCA in the House is all but assured. In the Senate, EFCA’s chances are less clear. Due to Senate rules, 60 senators must vote for “cloture” on EFCA before it is brought to a full Senate vote. Once it is brought to a full vote, only 50 votes are needed to pass the bill (Vice President Biden would break a 50-50 tie). Congressman Miller and Senator Kennedy apparently believe that they already have the needed 60 votes in the Senate to pass EFCA. The Democrats currently hold 58 Senate seats, with a 59th likely to come soon from Minnesota’s Al Franken. At least one Republican, Senator Arlen Specter (R-Pennsylvania), has previously voted for cloture on EFCA. While some more conservative Democrats have recently expressed doubts about EFCA, there is concern in some management quarters that these Democrats might vote for cloture (where 60 votes are needed), allowing the bill to come to a floor vote, and then vote against the bill in the final vote (where only 50 votes are needed). This would arguably give those more conservative Democrats the ability to say they voted against EFCA, while supporting the party by voting for cloture.

I am generally not one to support "purges" of Republicans who do not vote in lockstep with the rank-and-file. This is different. The EFCA would be terrible for our economy at any time -- fluid labor markets and workplaces free of "rules" are one of our great competitive advantages -- and a farookin' catastrophe in the next couple of years. Do not make life any harder for business than it is already. If Arlen Specter votes for cloture and enables its passage I will personally swim the Delaware to work against him in the next election.

MORE: You have to admit, enacting the EFCA now would be substantial new evidence in support of the argument that the Obama administration is pushing the economy down on purpose.


By Blogger MTF, at Thu Mar 05, 04:08:00 PM:

We must fight back. The Democrats are so clueless on the economy that they think none of their actions are destructive. They think we are so productive a country that nothing they do can truly hurt. It's a party whose guiding ideal is political payback, and so they are about to charge forth, paying back the unions.

As I said before, "What's quickly becoming apparent is that this administration are an economic threat to the middle class, a political threat to federalism and an international disaster to our allies. What's good about Obama?"

Cramer put it well in his response to White House attacks on him (I still can't believe I'm agreeing with a liberal Democrat, but who cares when we're saving America!): "The market's the effect; much of what the president is fighting for is the cause." The Dow will go down 300 points when this bill is introduced.  

By Blogger MTF, at Thu Mar 05, 04:18:00 PM:

Wow- great link TH. Hinderaker puts the point exceptionally well: "More likely the explanation is that Obama is an economic illiterate, and subscribes to the idea--which I think is rather common among Democrats--that what the government does has little impact on the economy. Obama likely believes that the economy will recover on its own, and in the meantime--in Rahm Emanuel's immortal words--he shouldn't let the crisis go to waste."  

By Blogger Charlottesvillain, at Thu Mar 05, 04:48:00 PM:

On some of the REALLY fringe sites the chatter is that the administration, and the previous one, have intentionally engineered the entire financial crisis in order to crash the economy. Why? Because oil production has peaked and the demand destruction of the current contraction is the only thing preventing massive world civil unrest. Whacko stuff even for those of us who otherwise take PO theory very seriously. And yet the stuff coming out of this administration has one searching for some kind of plausible explanation, and I suppose this one is as good as any.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thu Mar 05, 04:55:00 PM:

Specter isn't going to run for his Senate seat next year! Obama (Emanuel?) has already promised him Ginsberg's seat when she retires for reasons of health at the end of the current session. Specter is bought and paid for and will not stray just to do what is right.
Do you think Obama learned nothing in the land of Illinois under the guidance of Blago?  

By Blogger SR, at Thu Mar 05, 08:21:00 PM:

What gives credence to the notion of intentional destruction of the economy is that everybody in the administration can't be economically illiterate.
Larry Summers for instance.
Somebody has got to resign with honor.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thu Mar 05, 08:48:00 PM:

You're starting me to scare me with these fringe ideas and links you're providing, TH.

Just because you disagreee with Obama's policies--or even if you think he is an economic illiterate--do you honestly believe that Messrs. Bernanke, Volcker, Summers and Geithner are intent on keeping the economy down Really?

And if so, to what end? So they can buy some GM stock cheap?  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thu Mar 05, 09:19:00 PM:

Specter isn't going to run for his Senate seat next year! Obama (Emanuel?) has already promised him Ginsberg's seat when she retires for reasons of health at the end of the current session.

What??? Specter is 80 years old, suffers from Hodgkin's Disease, supports the death penalty, opposes gun control, and has a shi*ty NARAL rating. Do you really think Obama is going to appoint him to the SCOTUS? Really? Because of one lousy vote in favor of the Stimulus Package?

Who are you people?  

By Blogger TigerHawk, at Thu Mar 05, 09:33:00 PM:

Anon 8:48 - No, I don't believe that Obama is trying to wreck the economy. Not at all. But it is interesting that some of his policies are so obviously counterproductive (the EFCA among them) that it is starting to look that way.

Anon 9:19 -- Agreed. There is a greater chance that Barack Obama would appoint Joe Lieberman to the Supreme Court than Arlen Specter. And there is no chance of that.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Fri Mar 06, 02:19:00 AM:

So they can buy some GM stock cheap?

No, so they can take control.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Fri Mar 06, 07:21:00 AM:

so they [Messrs. Bernanke Summers, Volcker and Geithner] can take control

OK I'll bite randian. Control of what? What do they get to "take control" of by driving down the economy? Enlighten me.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Fri Mar 06, 08:50:00 AM:

I'm a Pennsylvanian and a registered Democrat who has voted for Arlen Specter every time since I've been eligible to vote. He's been a centrist, as I am, even though he's hard to take at times because of his self-righteousness and his tendency to seize every media opportunity. And yet. . .

If he votes for cloture or votes for EFCA, I will switch my registration to Republican and vote for his challenger (Pat Toomey) in the primary in 2010. If he were to survive that challenge, I'd vote for anyone other than him in the fall, because EFCA is such a terrible bill that he'd have proven once and for all that he cares more about hearing his own voice and seeing himself on TV than anything else. Make no mistake, if Arlen senses he's a swing vote, he'll put himself right in the spotlight, publicly agonize over how torn he is and then vote the way the wind is blowing -- with the Democrats.

The Centrist  

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