April 21, 2011 NILRR News Clips

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Senate passes right-to-work bill by veto-proof majority

NH Union Leader Online, 4/21/2011

New Hampshire AFL-CIO President Mark MacKenzie said after
the vote, “Quite simply, our state’s working people were sold out today by the
state Senate.” Other opponents characterized the bill as a “race to the economic
bottom,” pushed by the National Right to Work Committee in Virginia and big
corporations. Right-to-work states draw lower paying jobs and see lower average
incomes, they argued.

Those who favored the bill said it is a matter of freedom
and personal choice, and argued passing right-to-work will attract new business
to the state. No one should be forced to support an organization they disagree
with, they say.

“It came down to a simple matter of freedom of choice, and
I ran as a freedom kind of guy,” said Sen. Raymond White, R-Bedford. Several
senators said businesses called them privately to ask for the bill.

NLRB Stirs up Hornet’s Nest by Threatening Right to Work

Wall Street Journal Online, 4/21/2011

 After 17 months and $2 billion, the NLRB sandbags Boeing

We knew that Big Labor had political pull at the Obama-era
National Labor Relations Board, but yesterday’s complaint against Boeing is one
for the (dark) ages. By challenging Boeing’s right to build aircraft in South
Carolina, labor’s bureaucratic allies in Washington are threatening the ability
of states to compete for new jobs and investment—and risking the economic
recovery to boot.


Weekly Standard Online, 4/25/2011

Despite having its best friend forever in the White House,
the American labor movement is in mortal crisis

One of the most widely circulated photographs during the
Wisconsin union battle was of a protester in Madison holding up a sign that
read: “Dear Barack, Please put on your comfortable shoes. Love, America.”

While that sign may not have meant anything to the rest of
the country, those in the labor movement were all too aware that the president
hadn’t lived up to one of his most explicit promises. “And understand this,” he
told a union audience on the campaign trail in 2007. “If American workers are
being denied their right to organize and collectively bargain, when I’m in the
White House I’ll put on a comfortable pair of shoes myselfI’ll
walk on that picket line with you as president of the United States of America.”

Graham Takes on Bill Daley, NLRB

National Review Online, 4/21/2011

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) is furious with the National
Labor Relations Board for challenging Boeing’s new production facility in South

Graham tells National Review Online that he may attempt to
defund the agency for punishing right-to-work states. He also urges White House
chief of staff William Daley to defend Boeing’s ability to determine where it
manufactures its products

Re: Graham Takes on Daley, NLRB

National Review Online, 4/21/2011

The NLRB’s decision to go after Boeing for creating jobs in
a right-to-work state really is outrageous. And it’s something the governors of
Nevada, Iowa, North Carolina, Virginia, and Florida — five right-to-work states
that Obama carried in 2008 — ought to weigh in on.

Former NLRB chairman says board’s complaint against Boeing is unprecedented

Washington Examiner Online,  4/21/2011

Specifically, one of the cases the complaint relies on is
the 1969 U.S. Supreme Court decision NLRB v. Gissel Packing Co. which set
parameters for employer free speech. In its complaint, the NLRB said that
statements made by Boeing executives in which they talked about past strikes in
Washington and the threat of future strikes were out of bounds under the Gissel

Collective bargaining bill heads to full TN Senate

Associated Press Online, 4/21/2011

A proposal to replace Tennessee teachers’ collective
bargaining rights with a policy manual is “insulting to teachers” and could
create chaos, said the lobbyist for the Tennessee Education Association.

Republican Sen. Jack Johnson of Franklin is the main
sponsor of the measure that passed the Senate Education Committee 6-3 on
Wednesday and will now go to the Senate floor.

United Farm Workers fight dwindling membership

Associated Press Online, 4/20/2011

The United Farm Workers of America drew national attention
when workers led by Cesar Chavez inspired a boycott of table grapes in the 1960s
and then forced vineyard owners to sign hundreds of contracts providing better
pay and working conditions.

But experts say employer intimidation, high worker turnover
and demographic changes have resulted in union membership plummeting in recent
decades, despite the problems workers reeled off at the meeting: low or stagnant
wages; employers who don’t provide shade from the scorching sun; and foremen who
rob workers of their pay or prevent them from taking water and bathroom breaks.

The workers in the room were too afraid of reprisals to
agree to be named or even quoted individually by The Associated Press, and that
fear is one reason union leaders want to change the way workers organize. In
1975, the union fought for workers’ right to hold secret ballot elections. Now,
in a historic shift, it is backing a California bill that would move organizing
efforts off farms, where leaders believe employer intimidation has helped throw

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