Sunday with Ferris
In March, it seemed the pro-union legislation known as “card check” was dead – thanks in part to Sen. Arlen Specter (R., Pa.).
Before that, Specter had been coy about the Employee Free Choice Act. He’d voted to allow a debate on the measure in 2007, without commenting on the substance. In March, he had two main concerns: (1) card check, where workers sign cards to indicate support for a union instead of holding a secret-ballot election, and (2) the potential harm of increasing costs to businesses in a recession.
Well, the recession continues, but card check lives – thanks in part to Sen. Arlen Specter (D., Pa.).
Specter and five other colleagues are trying to craft a compromise that would appeal to moderate senators. The New York Times says they are even considering dropping the card-check provision.
Majority Leader Harry Reid had predicted the bill would be back. He said in March, “Anyone who thinks they’re burying card check because of Specter’s statement in an effort to avoid a primary in Pennsylvania should not think this legislation is going to go away.”
Then, the issue was the GOP primary and a rematch against Pat Toomey, who almost beat Specter in 2004. At that point, Specter was trying to appeal to conservatives.
But a month later he switched parties, and now needs labor support because of the expected primary challenge from U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak of Delaware County.