Monday, March 16, 2009

Bob McDonnell supports workers' rights to secret ballots

By Bob McDonnell

Early in this race we have witnessed the emergence of a defining issue. That issue is which candidate will stand up for Virginia’s pro-business environment, and stand up to big national unions attempting to take away the basic right of workers to cast secret ballots in workplace elections? After this week it is clear I am the only candidate running for Governor who will do this.

On Tuesday the so-called “Employee Free Choice Act” was introduced in the United States Congress. This legislation, far more aptly titled “Card Check”, would eliminate a worker’s most basic right: The right to cast a secret ballot in elections to determine if a union will be organized at their place of employment. Further, under this legislation, in newly organized workplaces, if the employer and the union do not agree to a contract in the first 130 days of negotiations, an arbitration panel from the federal government can be brought in and its decision would be binding on the employer.

This legislation threatens to significantly weaken our economy at a time when we can least afford it. For that reason this bill is adamantly opposed by workers, small business owners, and local Chambers of Commerce nationwide. Warren Buffett, the legendary investor who actually supported Barack Obama for President, came forward this week to make his opposition to the legislation clear.

Warren Buffet said this: “I think the secret ballot's pretty important in the country. I'm against card check to make a perfectly flat statement."

I am too.

This week I asked my three possible Democratic opponents to join with me in standing with the workers and business owners of Virginia in opposing this legislation. Would they choose Virginia’s best interests over their national special interests?

They chose their special interests. They chose the side of the big national unions.

All three refused to say a bad word about “Card Check.” Given recent reporting in The Washington Post that union donations to Virginia Democrats are reaching record levels, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised by the Democratic candidates positions.

It is clear. “Card Check” is a defining issue in this race. I am the only candidate running for Governor opposed to this job-killing legislation. And I know this means I have a bulls-eye on my back for big unions nationwide.

I don’t think we should turn Virginia into Southern Michigan. I believe we must oppose federal policies that would weaken and undermine our pro-business environment here in the Commonwealth. Too many jobs are on the line.

If you agree, I hope you will consider joining our campaign.

Please visit to get involved in our effort to stop “Card Check” and bring new jobs and greater prosperity to every region of Virginia.

Additional information on "Card Check" legislation:

-- Circus Act (RTD Editorial)
-- McDonnell Decries Federal Labor Proposal (Roanoke Times)
-- McDonnell Rails Against “Card-Check” Legislation (Virginian-Pilot)
-- Gubernatorial Candidates in Virginia React to Employee Free Choice Act Bill (RTD)
-- Gubernatorial Candidates Spar on Union Practices (WHSV)
-- McDonnell Opposes Card Check Legislation (Washington Post Blog)

Cross-posted at

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