By Jim Gilmore
I spoke to the Harrisonburg Rotary Club today and raised a very important issue that came up in my debate on September 18 with Mark Warner before the Fairfax Chamber of Commerce: The fact that Mark Warner supports the so-called Employee Free Choice Act being considered by Congress!
You can view Mark Warner’s comments on this issue at the Fairfax Chamber debate – and my comments as well – and also Mark Warner’s remarks at a July 4th union rally in Northern Virginia.
The AFL-CIO has said that electing Mark Warner is their “major goal for the 2008 elections” and one of the reasons is Mark Warner’s support for this pro-union bill – also known as the Union Check Card legislation – which would undercut Virginia’s historic Right to Work Law and dramatically increase union activity in our state.
In addition to threatening Virginia’s Right to Work Law, I am convinced the Union Check Card poses a strong threat to Virginia’s small business and industries. The vast majority of union petitions filed and elections held in Virginia involve companies employing fewer than 100 people. Small businesses simply do not have the resources to contest organizing efforts and will be under the gun in their efforts to oppose this kind of union power grab.
Under Union Card Check, workers would no longer have the right to a secret ballot election so union organizers would be free to target workers with harassment and intimidation. All militant union organizers would need to do is gather signed so-called “union authorization cards” from a simple majority of workers. And union organizers would know which workers have signed cards and which ones haven’t, so independent-minded workers who dare to question the “benefits” of this increased union power would pay a severe price.
In addition to indicating his support for increased union power at the Fairfax Chamber of Commerce, Mark Warner was recently caught on videotape telling union officials that he would support the Union Check Card legislation sponsored by Ted Kennedy. Senator Kennedy openly acknowledges this legislation is designed to make it easier for union officials to establish themselves as the “exclusive” bargaining agents of employees, including union members and non-members alike, in currently nonunion workplaces in every state in the union, including Virginia.
Economic development specialists have noted time and again that Right to Work states like Virginia, where a relatively small share of employees are subject to “exclusive” union bargaining, enjoy a huge competitive advantage over non-Right to Work states where a higher share of workers are unionized. Low-union-density states like Virginia enjoy far faster growth in jobs, incomes, and opportunity for their working families.
As a former governor, Mark Warner knows that fact. But to obtain the support of the big labor unions, Mark Warner has now promised to work with Ted Kennedy and Barack Obama to undermine Virginia’s competitive advantage. And of course, the entire national economy would be seriously damaged by enactment of the Union Check Card bill.
Working with John McCain I can help stop this union power grab and this effort to undercut Virginia’s historic Right to Work Law. But I need your help! Under a President Obama, the last thing Virginia needs is another Senator who will kowtow to Big Labor. Mark Warner’s campaign is being flooded with union campaign cash and the big labor endorsements. I can combat his union support if I have your help!
Together we can stand up for Virginia. Please click on the link below and contribute to my campaign. Or, send your check today for $25, $50, $100 or even $500 if you can afford it. Helping save Virginia’s Right to Work Law and protecting our working families from harassment and intimidation is a very wise investment -- so please contribute to our campaign to stand up to Mark Warner and forced unionism today!
Cross-posted at Bloggers 4 Jim Gilmore