We Need More Senators Who Support Workers Like Senator Jon Tester

By Matt Murray
NH Labor News

This week, Democratic Senator Jon Tester of Montana, submitted new legislation in support of workers who have been locked out by their employer.

In August, French-owned Imerys’ locked out workers at their plant in Three Forks. Workers are members of the Boilermakers union (IBB) and have been fighting back against the lockout for three months now.  This is the first lockout in Montana in over 35 years.

According to the AFL-CIO, “the lockout comes after Imerys consistently has refused to back down from its anti-worker contract proposal. The proposed contract would eliminate retiree health insurance, seniority, overtime over eight hours, double-time pay for overtime and the current defined contribution 401(k) plan, and would freeze the defined pension plan.”

Last month, Tester rallied with workers locked and vowed to take legislative action in the U.S. Senate.

Tester’s bill, the Prohibiting Incentives for Corporations that Kickout Employees Tax (PICKET) Act, will eliminate tax breaks, deductions, and credits for corporations that lock out their workers during a labor dispute.

“When corporations sell their workers downstream, they shouldn’t be able to turn around and cash in on the backs of taxpayers,” Tester said. “Imerys is a multinational, billion-dollar foreign corporation that has shown no interest in our Montana values and this bill will hold them accountable for unnecessarily upending the lives of workers and their families.”

Tester’s bill will specifically require corporations who lock out workers during a labor dispute to pay the old corporate tax rate of 35 percent, rather than the new rate of 21 percent for the entire taxable year.

Tester’s bill also will prevent these corporations from deducting wages and benefits paid to any temporary workers during the lockout and prevent the corporation from receiving certain tax credits for hiring replacement workers.

The PICKET Act applies to all U.S. corporations and U.S.-based subsidiaries of foreign corporations like Imerys. Tester’s bill is available HERE.

We need all of our US Senators to join Senator Tester in holding these greedy corporations accountable.  We need to stop rewarding them for locking workers out.

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Reposted from NH Labor News

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

Your Vote is the Last Line of Defense Against One-Party Control

Hugh J. Campbell

Hugh J. Campbell Son of a steelworker, Philadelphia, Pa.

The bottom line of Adam Serwer’s The Guardrails Have Failed is: “As for Kavanaugh, every opinion he writes, every decision he joins, and every day he sits on the bench will be tainted with illegitimacy.” Senators who represent a shrinking portion of the population confirmed a justice more Americans oppose than support. He was nominated by a president for whom most of the electorate did not vote. Republican control of the three branches of government is countermajoritarian. With the guardrails of separated powers broken, the last remaining defense for American democracy and the rule of law is the electorate itself.

Since April 8, 2017, when Neil Gorsuch became Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, the United States Government has been controlled by one political party. Why is this important?

In his Oct. 15, 2011 Senate Judiciary Committee testimony on separation of powers, Justice Antonin Scalia tells us: The real constitution of the Soviet Union, that constitution did not prevent the centralization of power in one person or in one party. And when that happens, the game is over, the Bill of Rights is just what our Framers would call a “parchment guarantee.”

Unless the Republican party ceases to control the legislative branch of the U.S. government in January, 2019, centralization of power will continue in one party, the Republican Party, for another 24 months, and if Donald Trump has his way, that centralization of power will be in one person.

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Unions for All, Unions for 15

Unions for All, Unions for 15