Pelosi Speaks in Support of Workers’ Rights

Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi spoke on the House floor yesterday against the Republicans’ so-called Workforce Democracy and Fairness Act. Below are some excerpts from her speech:

“More than 75 years ago, President Franklin Roosevelt signed a bill which created the National Labor Relations Board and said he did so to give every worker ‘the freedom of choice and action which is justly his.’ That was a very important moment for workers because it said that they could negotiate, they could bargain collectively – giving great leverage to workers in our country, and it was necessary.

“The freedom of choice and action has rested at the core of a growing, thriving American workforce. It has created the American middle class that has made our country great and is the backbone of our democracy.

“This legislation today undermines freedom of choice and action. It will weaken our middle class and again, weaken our democracy. For months, in Wisconsin, Ohio and other states nationwide, Americans have seen Republican governors and legislatures attack teachers, firefighters and police officers and other public servants. And we’ve seen American workers – union and non-union alike – fight back, inspiring the nation.

“My colleagues on the other side of the aisle have promoted many myths about their misguided legislation, which they’re bringing forward today and how it will impact the National Labor Relations Board.

“Simply put, this legislation would deny workers their right to a free and fair election to form a union. It adds extensive delays to the process as workers organize, with the clear intention of, as my colleague Congressman George Miller, the Ranking Member of the Education and Labor Committee has said: ‘wearing down workers so they give up fighting for a better deal.’

“At a time when Americans are demanding jobs and job growth, economic growth for our country, today’s legislation is the wrong priority. We need to be solving the problem and challenge of creating jobs and not adding to the problem, as this bill would do.

“I urge my colleagues to vote ‘no.’”

To read the complete text of Leader Pelosi’s remarks, click here.