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PNS Daily Newscast - June 15, 2018 


AG Sessions says the Bible backs the Trump administration policy separating children from parents. Also on the Friday rundown: emails suggest political interference in feds ending a Mining-Health Study; and Iowa marks Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

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Right to Unionize = Fight in U.S. Senate This Week

June 26, 2007


About 20 percent of Washington workers are union members, and more say they would join a union if they could. Supporters of the "Employee Free Choice Act" now before Congress say the bill would make it easier to form workplace unions, using open registration rather than secret ballots. But the Act faces major hurdles this week in the Senate in a battle that's straight down party lines. The bill already passed the U.S. House, where co-sponsor Brian Baird of Vancouver calls the possibility of a Senate filibuster "ironic."

“What's so interesting is that the Republican minority is trying to say, 'The reason we are opposed to this bill is we think people should be able to vote in elections.' And yet, they're not allowing this bill to come up for a vote!”

Baird believes people who want to unionize should have a fair chance to do so.

“There's no small amount of hypocrisy in the conduct and rhetoric of the Republicans who are blocking this bill. I think this thing has a majority in the Senate, if they would allow it to come for a vote.”

The Employee Free Choice Act would also penalize employers who discipline or threaten workers for trying to unionize. Opponents of the bill say the current secret-ballot system prevents unions from intimidating workers into joining. Supporters point out that workers would still have the option of holding an election.

Baird believes people who want to unionize should have a fair chance to do so.

“There's no small amount of hypocrisy in the conduct and rhetoric of the Republicans who are blocking this bill. I think this thing has a majority in the Senate, if they would allow it to come for a vote.”

Chris Thomas/Eric Mack, Public News Service - WA