Lincoln Latest to Oppose Card Check

Posted April 6, 2009 at 2:38pm

Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) on Monday came out against a controversial labor bill, joining a growing list of moderate Republicans and Democrats who have raised concerns with the pro-union Employee Free Choice Act.

Speaking at the Little Rock Political Animals Club, Lincoln said she would oppose the EFCA, otherwise known as “card check,— if it comes to the floor in its current form, the Arkansas Business Web site reported.

“I cannot support that bill,— Lincoln was reported to have told participants.

“Cannot support that bill in its current form. Cannot support and will not support moving it forward in its current form,— she added.

Lincoln is the latest in a string of Senators — including Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) — voicing resistance to the card check bill as it currently stands.

Unions and business interests are spending millions of dollars on lobbying campaigns targeting Lincoln, fellow Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor (D) and other Senate moderates on the bill, which would eliminate the use of a secret ballot when workers vote to organize. The measure also would provide for new binding-arbitration provisions.

But with the defections of Specter and now Lincoln, that bill appears all but dead in its current form. Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), the primary sponsor of the bill, has begun looking at possible compromises that could pass the Senate, although those discussions remain in their infancy.