PUBLIC SECTOR UNIONS & THE 2012 ELECTIONS

From the desk of Stephen Cabot: While the news media has been focusing on public sector unions in Wisconsin and Ohio, the Obama administration has quietly encouraged the unionization of 45,000 airport screeners. The Transportation Security Administrator, John Pistole, a pro-union advocate, has been lauded by federal unions, who have wanted to unionize airport screeners for many years. This is an extraordinary development in light of the anti-public-union sentiment that has swept the county in the last few months. As the Obama Administration and Democratic legislators gear up for the 2012 elections, they will surely enlist the vast armies of unionized workers to deliver their election victories. As we get closer and closer to 2012, we can expect to see ever-increasing pro-union directives emanating from the White House.

expert labor relations advice

PUBLIC SECTOR UNIONS WANT HIGHER TAXES

From the desk of Stephen Cabot: Throughout the country, public sector unions are campaigning for higher taxes as a means to prevent government cutbacks. From Oregon to New York and states in between, unions are waging ferocious fights to prevent states from balancing budgets by cutting expenses.

Unions, such as SEIU and AFSCME, are spending extraordinary sums to promote higher taxes as a means to prevent cutbacks that they feel will result in fewer members, lower amounts from union dues, and less money to spend on political campaigns.

In Oregon, the Oregon Education Association and the SEIU spent millions of dollars to pass ballot initiatives that ultimately raised business and income taxes by approximately $727 million.

In Arizona, unions were behind an effort that increased sales taxes from 5.6% to 6.6%, thus helping to raise one billion dollars.

In New York, the United Teachers union spent $750,000 to prevent the state from capping some of the highest real estate taxes in the nation. In fact, real estate taxes in New York State are so high that many middle class families and small businesses have left the state.

And so it goes from state to state, but it doesn’t stop there. It exists nationally as well. Unions give more money than do any other entities to the national Democratic party. And the purpose of their giving is no different from their state-by-state donations: generous donations to congressional, senatorial, and presidential campaigns require a payback, And that payback is legislation that will increase wages and benefits for public sector workers by raising taxes. Public sector unions benefit; public sector workers benefit. And the American people, their states and corporations foot the bill. The American people, who are not members of public sector unions, are the victims of a vicious cycle of union-government-union actions that are increasingly injurious to the health of the American economy.

expert labor relations advice

THE COMING SEIU TSUNAMI

From the desk of Stephen Cabot: According to an article in The Wall Street Journal (www.wsj.com), the Service Employees International Union, which presently has 2 million members, intends to launch a major offensive against corporate America that will “peak in the summer of 2012.”

The Union intends to recruit new members to its ranks in 10 to 15 major American cities, including Cleveland, Milwaukee, Miami, and Detroit. Its recruitment efforts will take place at political primary events, town hall meetings, and other gatherings. No doubt, its focus will be at Democratic Party events, for the SEIU is a stalwart contributor to Democratic candidates. In the last presidential election, the SEIU spent $70 million! It is reportedly prepared to spend tens of millions of dollars on its aggressive new recruitment efforts.

Many of its members are public sector workers who will receive inordinately large pensions upon their retirement, which will further contribute to the near bankruptcy of states. The Union, obviously, hopes to defeat any legislative measures that will curtail the size of those tax-payer funded pensions. Hence, its forthcoming efforts to beef up its membership rolls and deliver the maximum number of votes to its Democratic allies in 2012.

It is essential that both legislators and Corporate America prepare effective survival strategies to defeat the deleterious efforts of the SEIU. If not, public service pensions will indeed bankrupt one state after another leading to financial devastation throughout the land.

expert labor relations advice