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Trump Ends Obama Contracting Rule That Empowered Union Bosses

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The vampires who sink their teeth into the working man thought they had it all locked up. But now President Trump has given the workers a fighting chance against the big labor bosses.

“Trump Ends Obama Contracting Rule,” by Bill McMorris, Washington Free Beacon, March 27, 2017:

President Trump on Monday repealed Barack Obama’s blacklisting rule that would have benefitted labor unions in federal contracting.

Trump signed a resolution passed by the House and Senate overturning the rule, which would have forced companies bidding for government contracts to report all allegations of unfair labor practices filed against them. Previously, contractors only needed to disclose incidents in which they had been found guilty of labor violations.

President Obama issued the “blacklisting” executive order in 2014, saying it would lead to “economy and efficiency in procurement by contracting with responsible sources who comply with labor laws.” The Labor Department announced the final rule in August 2016.

Labor law experts observed that the rule could tilt the scales in favor of labor organizations. Veteran union attorney Robert Schwartz said in a blog post that it gave “unions unprecedented new leverage against companies” during disputes because they could imperil federal contract opportunities with allegations, rather than proven violations.

The National Labor Relations Board, the federal government’s top labor arbiter, handles unfair labor practice complaints. The agency investigates allegations and either files official complaints against the defendant, encourages settlement between the two parties, or dismisses the charges. The agency handled more allegations in 2016 than in 2015, but the number of settlements and official charges fell. Workers issued 1,272 complaints in 2016, equal to the number issued in 2015, even though allegations increased by 5 percent over the year. Settlements were reached in 6,010 cases, a 7 percent decline.

Rep. Virginia Foxx (R., N.C.), chairman of the House Education and Workforce Committee, praised Trump for “rejecting this misguided approach.”

“This duplicative rule would have served only to empower union bosses,” Foxx said in a statement. “There has long been a system in place to hold federal contractors accountable, and the best way to ensure fair pay and safe workplaces is to enforce that system effectively.”…

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