Diary

Internal Dem Strife Over Card Check?

Amanda Carpenter has the story:

A reputable source tells Big Labor is “in a panic” because Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid isn’t ready to call up a vote on the Employee Free Choice Act, known as “card check” to its opponents.

Apparently, Reid won’t put it on the calendar unless he has the votes. If you’re wondering which Democrats might defect, all you have to do is look at the ones who are up in 2010.

Labor is now running ads to retaliate.

There’s no question that Card Check is not a popular piece of legislation among Senate Democrats. Even those on record in support regard the issue as a loser politically, and would prefer to see it never come for a vote. That’s especially true during Obama’s first 100 days, which will draw disproportionate attention and set the early tone for his presidency. When Republicans filibuster the bill, it will clearly draw more attention to a debate where Congressional Democrats line up with Big Labor against the majority of Americans. And with a debate still to come on what to do about the automakers, that’s the last thing Democrats need.

All that said, what Reid is doing is more or less standard operating procedures for bitter legislative pills: Congressional leaders usually tell proponents of a bad bill that they won’t get a vote on their legislation until there’s a hard whip count showing they have the votes. This is usually the signal for advocacy groups to apply pressure to swing votes. If they can’t come up with the 60 votes needed to overcome a filibuster, they won’t get their vote.

In this case, it looks like one of the swing Senators comes from Colorado — and that likely means incoming Senator Michael Bennett. That’s because Carpenter reports that Card Check supporters have started running this ad in Colorado. As Mark Udall has supported Card Check in the past, it looks like the pressure is aimed at the new guy.

Don’t be surprised if it starts showing up in other states as well.

Update:

izoneguy posted this great video in the comment section: testimony from former union organizers explaining how they did their job: