Let’s play a game! Below are six quotes from various conservative politicians, business representatives and other organizations. Three of them are from the 1930s and were aimed at the Wagner Act. The other three are about the Employee Free Choice Act. Can you guess which are which? Answers at the bottom.
1. “Specifically, the provisions of the bill will operate to provoke and encourage labor disputes, rather than diminish them . . . Its real effect will be to serve as a vehicle for the advancement of the selfish interests of minority labor organizations.”
2. “Unions want it because it would make it easier to recruit dues-paying members, not because it would somehow defend workers’ right to choose freely to unionize.”
3. “To support labor in this objective by enacting this bill would permanently close the door to recovery.”
4. “The act is a poison pill for our ailing economy, which is why every major business organization from every industry sector has come out in strong opposition to it.”
5. “My general criticism of the . . . bill is not so much that it supports unionization as that it will in operation result in enforced unionization.”
6. “Labor unions are supposed to protect workers’ rights, yet union bosses want Congress to pass a law that actually robs workers of their democratic right . . . through a forced unionization process.”
1. Walter Harnischfeger, National Association of Manufacturers, March 21, 1935
2. Heritage Foundation, April 23, 2007
3. Guy Harrington, National Publishers Association, March 29, 1935
4. Brian Worth, Coalition for a Democratic Workplace, February 25, 2009
5. J.M. Larkin, Bethlehem Steel, April 5, 1935
6. Senator Orrin Hatch, June 26, 2007
vivaelbund is nomme de blog of a member of the Labor Nerd blog, an exciting new blog by young union staffers, academics, and activists, where it originally appeared.