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McKeon denounces card check

Local Palmdale businessman says ‘Americans should be concerned’

Posted: March 11, 2009 7:23 p.m.
Updated: March 10, 2009 5:00 p.m.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Rep. Howard P. "Buck" McKeon (R-Santa Clarita), the top Republican on the U.S. House Education and Labor Committee, today denounced the so-called Employee Free Choice Act, legislation introduced by congressional Democrats that would deny workers the right to secret ballots in union organizing elections.

"The deceptively-named Employee Free Choice Act is a job killer, putting an estimated 600,000 American jobs at risk in just the first year after its enactment, and would wreak havoc on an already reeling economy," McKeon said. "The American economy is in real trouble. Americans are losing their jobs and their homes. The notion that Congress would take up an anti-worker, special interest payback like this one - particularly at a time like this, with the economic challenges we face - is unconscionable. Card check is an affront to basic democratic rights, and it must be defeated. The sooner we dispense with this misguided legislation, the sooner we can get back to solving the real problems facing American families."

The Employee Free Choice Act is more widely known as "card check" legislation because it would replace federally-supervised secret ballot elections with a public authorization card sign-up process.

The Democrats' proposed legislation makes it clear that a union would be certified as soon as organizers secure a simple majority of signed authorization cards, giving workers no recourse to demand a secret ballot election on whether they actually wish to join the union.

The card check process is notoriously unreliable, Republicans have pointed out, opening workers up to intimidation and coercion, and the threat of retribution based on whether or not they choose to publicly sign a card.

One Palmdale-area business leader says Americans should be concerned about the Employee Free Choice Act. Johnny Zamrzla, President of Western Pacific Roofing Corp. says the legislation takes away an employee's secret ballot right.

"The Employee Free Choice Act is bad for the country and bad for employees in American companies because it allows the union to intimidate employees by taking away the right to the secret ballot," Zamrzla said. "I know Buck is engaged in protecting the basic democratic right to vote and is a leader in the fight to defeat the card check bill. Western Pacific and I support the defeat of the Employee Free Choice Act and thank the Congressman for his work on this issue."

NOTE: Republicans have proposed alternative legislation that would protect workers against intimidation and public pressure - on the part of either union organizers or employers - by guaranteeing that all workplace organizing elections would always take place by secret ballot. For more information on the Republican plan to protect workers' privacy, the Secret Ballot Protection Act (H.R. 1176), please click here.


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