Friday, April 22, 2011

Republican Union Busting

Mark Wilson, president of the Florida Chamber of Commerce wants union leaders to take an economics course.

"This is a sincere offer," he said. "I'm willing to pay for 100 union leaders to go through an Economics 101 class so that they have a basic understanding of how this economy works."

Unions are withdrawing money out of Regions Bank, Bank of America, PNC Bank, SunTrust Bank and Wachovia. The banks are member of the Chamber of Commerce. Unions are doing this in protest of the Paycheck Protection Act.

What unions are doing is classic political activism. After Rosa Parks was arrested for not giving up her seat on a Alabama bus. A boycott ensued. On June 4, 1956, the segregation of buses was ruled unconstitutional. The boycott also financially hurt white Montgomery, Alabama businesses. I doubt the union protests will be as successful. Unions are doing this because Wilson supports legislation that would financially destroy the right to collectively bargain. Unions don't need an economics lesson to understand that Wilson wants to lower wages and benefits.

The Palm Beach Post correctly pointed out that Republicans in the Florida legislature are using the legislation has political payback. Republicans don't want unions to be able to collect dues to engage in political purposes. Yet Republicans in Tallahassee have no problems in restarting the once banned Leadership Funds. The hypocrisy is staggering. Grover Norquist publicly said Republicans will break groups that don't back the GOP.

GROVER NORQUIST: "We plan to pick up another five seats in the Senate and hold the House through redistricting through 2012. And rather than negotiate with the teachers' unions' and the trial lawyers and the various leftist interest groups, we intend to break them."

Legally, the Payment Protection Act makes no sense. Laws are suppose to protect life, liberty and property. Who is harmed from a union member giving a voluntary deduction to the AFL-CIO? The Supreme Court ruled in Citizen United v. Federal Election Commission that government can not limit profit or non-profit corporate expenditures on political activity. The Payment Protection Act is designed strictly to limit union expenditures on political activity.

The Payment Protection Act will eventually be signed by Gov. Rick Scott. The legal challenges will begin after that.

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