Legislative Updates

PRO Act Action Alert:

 

Union organizations will be making a huge push in support of the PRO Act (H.R. 2474) this Wednesday with a day of action on the Hill. The bill currently has 214 cosponsors, only 4 away from a majority in the House. It is critical that ABC members reach out to their members of Congress in opposition to this dangerous legislation. ABC’s PRO Act action alert is available here, and we will be sending out an updated alert on Wednesday morning urging members to call their representatives and voice their concerns about the bill.

Election Update:

  Last week, Democrats held their fourth presidential debate. On the stage were former vice president Joe Biden | Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) | Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) | Sen. Kamala D. Harris (Calif.) | South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg | former congressman Beto O’Rourke of Texas | Sen. Amy Klobuchar (Minn.) | businessman Andrew Yang | Sen. Cory Booker (N.J.) | former housing and urban development secretary Julián Castro | Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii) | businessman and environmentalist Tom Steyer. A few of these Democrats are now in danger of missing the November presidential debate, due to another tightening of the rules by the Democratic National Committee. Just eight candidates appear to have qualified so far (Biden, Booker, Buttigieg, Harris, Sanders, Warren, Yang, and Steyer). Under the new rules, candidates must register at least 3 percent in four polls approved by the party since Sept. 13, or at least 5 percent in two early state polls. Candidates must also earn don ...

Appropriations Update:

 

While the House continues with its impeachment probe, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is looking to move several spending bills this week before the November 21 deadline to avoid a government shutdown. Last week McConnell filed cloture on the motion to proceed on two spending packages passed by the House earlier this year. The move would allow Republicans to include their own text to the bills and begin floor debate on some of the Senate's least controversial bills, which are included in the first package, H.R. 3055 for Interior-Environment appropriations. If that package can win bipartisan support, the Senate could then take up a more difficult second package, H.R. 2740, which includes the Energy-Water appropriations.

Corporate Transparency Act:

  This week, the House will also push forward a controversial, but bipartisan bill aimed at preventing wrongdoers from exploiting United States corporations and limited liability companies (LLCs) for criminal gain. ABC believes this bill would create an undue burden on small businesses and has worked with a coalition of employer organizations led by the National Federation for Independent Business (NFIB) to oppose this legislation. See attached letter for additional information on this bill.   The current legislation would require that nearly every small business with fewer than 20 employees collect information and file reports with the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) on all owners of the business. This information would have to be updated annually. Failure to comply with this legislation would be a federal crime, with businesses facing steep civil fines of up to $10,000, and even criminal penalties of up to three years in prison. The bill would also raise ...

PRO Act Update:

 

Over the weekend, two Republican Representatives, Reps. Chris Smith (NJ-04) and Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01) joined on as cosponsors to the controversial PRO Act that ABC has been working to oppose. The bill now has 215 cosponsors, one away from majority support in the House due to the departure of Republicans Chris Collins and Sean Duffy and the death of Dem. Rep. Elijah Cummings.

It is critical that ABC members continue to reach out to their members of Congress and urge them to oppose this dangerous legislation. Please view the ABC Action Center for additional information.

 

PRO Act Update

  Last week, the House Education and Labor Committee approved the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (H.R. 2474) on a party line vote of 26-21, setting up a potential vote in the full House once lawmakers return from recess in October. ABC sent a letter to the committee opposing the bill, which currently has 210 Democratic cosponsors in the House, only eight away from a majority of House members supporting the bill. ABC has been leading efforts against the passage of this bill and it is critical that your U.S. Representatives hear from ABC members about the detrimental impact this legislation could have on the construction industry. You can view additional information from the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace and below are a number of talking points from ABC’s recess toolkit for you to use. Please reach out to you representatives right now and tell them to oppose the PRO Act. You may view ABC’s PRO Act legislative update here and view House cosponsors here and Senate cosponso ...

Election Update

 

Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.) is set to resign today, effective at 6 pm, and after the announcement from Rep. Paul Cook (R-Calif.) last week to leave Congress next year to run for a seat on the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors, a total of 18 House Republicans have decided to resign, retire or run for another office this year. In the Democratic Presidential Primary, Senator Elizabeth Warren surpassed VP Joe Biden in a new Iowa poll which put the Senator at 22 percent with likely caucus-goers in the state and the former VP at 20 percent. This is the first time Warren has been shown leading Biden, who continues to struggle to maintain his lead as the frontrunner.

Scalia Nomination Hearing

 

Last Thursday, the Senate HELP Committee held the hearing for Trump labor secretary nominee Eugene Scalia.

Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) asked Scalia about the administration’s rule on industry-recognized apprenticeship programs (IRAPs), noting concerns from labor unions on IRAPs safety requirements and portability of skills in construction. Scalia recognized the need to avoid undermining current successful apprenticeship programs and consider basic qualifications for programs but believes that more apprenticeships are better, expressing underlying support for the measures. During the hearing Scalia also faced criticism from Democrats over his record as a lobbyist and lawyer defending corporations against workers and regulators. The committee is scheduled to vote on Sept. 24 on whether to approve him for a final confirmation vote in the full Senate. The nomination is expected to pass along party lines.

PRO Act Update

 

The House Education and Labor Committee will meet Wednesday to mark up the union-backed Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act that ABC and a coalition of other industry organizations have fought to oppose. The bill has 208 Democrat cosponsors at this time and Democrats ultimately hope to get the bill to the floor before the end of the term. Every U.S. Senator running in the Democratic presidential primary is also a co-sponsor of the bill in the Senate. The markup is an important step closer to that goal, even if the bill will be blocked in the Republican-controlled Senate.

Please view the legislative update video on the PRO Act: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BMxLRJrovxM

 

Election Update

 

Last Thursday night, Democrats held their third presidential debate with the top 10 candidates and current front runners Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders facing each other on the same stage for the first time.

 

In what is seen as the biggest fight for the soul of the Democratic Party at this time, Biden, Warren and Sanders sparred over health care with Biden opposing the Sanders’ sponsored and Warren supported “Medicare for All” that would abolish the private health insurance system in the U.S. Biden continues to maintain a slight lead in the polls over the more progressive Warren and Sanders, while Warren has been steadily improving in the polls and has recently edged past Sanders for the second spot.

 

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