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02/06/07--Senate HELP Committee Chairman Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., House Education and Labor Chairman George Miller D-Calif., and John Sweeney, president of the AFL-CIO, during a news conference introducing  the "Employee Free Choice Act.".The legislation would make it easier for unions to woo workers to their cause could be the first real test of organized laborÕs clout in the Democratic-controlled Congress. Labor advocates, who played a major role in helping Democrats gain the House and Senate, have made what is termed Òcard-checkÓ legislation a top lobbying priority. The measure (HR 800) was introduced by Miller and Kennedy, D-Mass., who chairs the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions panel. Current law allows employers to insist on a second step, a vote by secret ballot after a majority of employees have signed cards, before a union can be certified as a bargaining agent. Not all employers choose to have an election. Under MillerÕs bill they would lose the option. It would do away with the second step, easing the path for organized labor. Under the current system, once an election date is set, employers are free to campaign against the union, and many do so actively. Labor groups, led by the AFL-CIO, say that gives management an opportunity to coerce workers to oppose the union. ÒFor too long, Congress has failed to act against the union-busting tactics now all too familiar in the workplace,Ó Kennedy said. ÒWe have a new Democratic Congress now. ItÕs up to us to pass this important bill, and we intend to do it.Ó Congressional Quarterly Photo by Scott J. Ferrell

02/06/07--Senate HELP Committee Chairman Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., House Education and Labor Chairman George Miller D-Calif., and John Sweeney, president of the AFL-CIO, during a news conference introducing the "Employee Free Choice Act.".The legislation would make it easier for unions to woo workers to their cause could be the first real test of organized laborÕs clout in the Democratic-controlled Congress. Labor advocates, who played a major role in helping Democrats gain...
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