WASHINGTON – President Biden has called on Congress to pass the most significant labor law changes in decades as part of his $ 2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal. But pushing this pro-union proposal through Congress could be a major obstacle for Democrats, even if a workers vote at Amazon.com Inc. would put a new spotlight on the issue.
Progressives, unions and the business community are fighting over the law to protect the right to organize. The bill would facilitate the unionization of construction workers and other independent contractors and establish a binding timetable for the start of negotiations between unions and employers. It would also undermine state “right to work” laws by allowing unions to collect dues from workers who have retired.
The course of the union bill is blurred as Congress begins to turn Mr. Biden’s outline into legislation. The union proposal is at odds with Senate rules on the type of legislation that can generally be brought forward with a simple simple majority; most Republicans oppose it and several Democrats in the 50-50 House have remained without commitment in their position.
Mr Biden is planning a series of talks with Democratic and Republican lawmakers about the contents of his package. A White House official did not specify whether the president wanted the PRO law to be enshrined in an infrastructure bill or simply pursued as a supplement. “The president supports the PRO law and wants to see it passed in its entirety,” the official said.
Tim Schlittner, director of communications for the AFL-CIO, said removing the law from emerging legislation would be a mistake.