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The Employee Free Choice Act has been passed by the US House of Representatives by a vote of 241-185, with 13 Republicans supporting the measure and two Democrats voting against it. However, it seems unlikely that it will go much further, since Republicans in the Senate have promised to filibuster to prevent it ever being voted upon, and the Bush administration has promised to veto the measure should it ever get that far.

The legislation, as described by the Wall Street Journal, “would let workers choose to join a union once a majority sign cards, a process that would be quicker and less open to employer opposition than a traditional secret-ballot election…The legislation also toughens penalties against employers who violate labor law during organizing drives and has a provision that makes arbitration mandatory if a first contract isn't reached between a union and an employer.”

Opponents, however, believe that this method of organization would lead to coercion by organized labor, and have described it as a political payoff to labor unions that supported the Democratic Party during the last election.
KC's View:
We’re not as offended by the idea of a political payoff – since that happens no matter who gets elected, it’s just that the recipients are different – as we are by the idea that this bill suggests that labor and management are simply refighting old battles. Wouldn’t it be nice if the two sides actually talked about issues that matter, like how to fix the healthcare system so that labor got better coverage, companies could reduce costs to manageable levels, and personal responsibility is emphasized?