Media Fogging the Card Check Debate
The labor side’s ability to get reporters to use their version of card-check’s controversial secret ballot provisions continues to amaze. Here’s WaPo‘s Alec MacGillis:
The bill, first introduced in 2003, gives workers the choice of whether they want to organize by getting a majority of workers to sign pro-union cards, instead of having to hold secret-ballot elections.
That’s one finely-spun sentence there. Who are the “workers” who will have this “choice”? They are the union organizers mounting a unionization campaign. Do any other “workers” who sign or don’t sign the cards have a “choice” of methods? a) The cards aren’t to choose the method. They are to choose the union. If 50% of the workers sign the cards the union will have won, period. An election at that point is prohibited; b) The only way an individual worker could use this system to “choose” a secret ballot election is by somehow signing a card if it will help union organizers meet the 30% threshhold required for an election but refusing to sign it if it will give the union organizers the 50% that will kill the election. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer recently outlined this complicated card-signing strategy with a straight face on the House floor. But of course no individual worker will know if his signed card will provide the 31% plurality or the 51% majority. Only the organizers know this. You could sign the card intending to provoke an election and discover that you actually prevented an election. There’s no way for ordinary workers to reliably game the system in order to “choose” a secret ballot. c) The whole underlying dispute is over whether the act of signing cards is an accurate expression of worker choices, or whether it subjects individuals to subtle and unsubtle community pressure to vote against their real preference. By assuming that the cards represent the true “choice” of workers, Hoyer and others assume what is at issue.
Kaus also points to this recent Rasmussen poll:
National Survey of 1,000 Adults
Conducted March 13-14, 2009
By Rasmussen Reports
1* Do most working Americans want to belong to a Labor Union?
33% Not sure
2* [Answered Only By Those who are Non-Union Members] Would you like to belong to a labor union where you work?
9% Not sure
NOTE: Margin of Sampling Error, +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence