The unions are steaming. They had agreed to support Obamacare, with Richard Trumka even doing commercials for them. In return, they were promised that provisions within the bill that hurt unions would be “fixed.” Last week, the union leaders went to the White House to see Obama and to get their fix. They walked away with their hats in their hands.
The cost of fixing Obamacare for the unions would be 19 billion a year and rising into infinity. And that only covers the Cadillac tax provision in the bill. Trade unions still need a mechanism for healthcare cost sharing, for employees who work for multiple contractors during the year. Unions are already upset at Obama and the democrats for such things as halting the Keystone Pipeline and the roadblocks to drilling for oil, that provide high paying jobs for union employees.
Just last week, 40,000 union workers dropped the AFL-CIO because of their support for Obamacare. Considering how far union membership has fallen, that is not an insignificant number. And another problem union members are facing is a cut in hours. It’s the same as getting a large pay cut for them. The Obama regime has done nothing but hinder job creation and unions are beginning to question their relationship with democrats, at least where private unions are concerned.
In the last two presidential elections, unions have shelled out nearly 1 billion dollars. The democrats are in danger of losing a large portion of that. They could afford the democrats when the economy was doing well, but with no new union jobs coming down the line, union execs can no longer agree to everything the democrats want to do.
That could bring up an interesting scenario. What if in 2014, some of the private unions invest in the republicans? And it’s not just the money, unions provide a lot of volunteers. I know many of you say it will never happen, but consider this fact. The 2014 elections are an in between election and the republicans have a great shot at taking the senate. The unions could send the democrats a message in 2014 before returning to the fold in 2016.
Steven Ahle is the Editor of Red Statements and a regular contributor to The D.C. Clothesline.