The top legislative priority of the labor movement is the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), which would make it easier for employees to unionize. Obama campaigned in support of EFCA. The NY Times has an article on the coming fight. Business has declared its opposition:
But corporate America has already declared war on labor’s push for new legislation that would help unions organize.
“This will be Armageddon,” said Randel Johnson, vice president for labor policy at the United States Chamber of Commerce.
However, there might be some room for compromise:
Chamber officials voiced confidence that they have the backing in the Senate to block the bill, a move that might cause business and labor to negotiate a version with compromises. Among the compromises floated would be keeping the secret ballot vote, but holding the vote just a few days after the union requests an election. Other ideas are to give union organizers access to workplace sites and to limit employers’ ability to campaign against the union.
It makes sense for the labor movement to consider compromise if the votes are not there to pass EFCA in the Senate. The labor movement has been trying to enact labor law reform since the 1970s to no avail. Obama’s victory is the best and may be the last opportunity for reform.