Most of us assumed when union thugs answered the call from the Barackopolis to show up in force at the healthcare town halls in a show of “support” for ObamaCare that they were doing it as sort of a “scratch my back, I scratch yours” kinda thing. They supported Democrats heavily during the campaign, and naturally were continuing to do so after Obama’s inauguration. Well, come to find out – the back scratching was on a much grander scale than we thought it was. Via the Detroit Free Press:
WASHINGTON — Antilabor forces say it’s welfare for the UAW and Democrats’ union allies. Labor supporters say it falls short of what’s needed as tens of thousands of union members are pushed into early retirement as employers cut back health care coverage.
They’re both talking about a $10-billion provision tucked deep inside thousands of pages of health care overhaul bills that could help the UAW’s retiree health-care plan and other union-backed plans.
It would see the government — at least temporarily — pay 80 cents on the dollar to corporate and union insurance plans for claims between $15,000 and $90,000 for retirees age 55 to 64.
Big businesses with union workers are twice as likely to offer retiree benefits as nonunion ones.
Greg Mourad of the National Right to Work Committee called it “a shameless case of political payback,” saying Democrats and President Barack Obama are trying “to force the rest of us to pay billions to cover those unions’ health care.”
Labor advocates say even more funding may be needed.
“It is not enough money,” said former U.S. Rep. David Bonior, a Mt. Clemens Democrat who chairs the board at Washington, D.C.-based American Rights at Work, a labor advocacy group. “That will have to be supplemented to fill the gap.”
They must have cut off this part of his quote: “And if that doesn’t happen, Democrats, you can forget about Big Labor continuing to show up on your behalf at town halls in order try and intimidate the opposition.”
OK – no, he didn’t say that, but then again he didn’t really have to.
Of course, this was all entirely predictable, considering for example how the administration threatened to rescind California’s stimulus money if they did not restore wage cuts to unionized home healthcare workers, budget cuts that had been approved by the CA legislature back in February. You may remember that a couple of days after that May 8th report came the news that the SEIU “was included in a conference call in which state and federal officials reviewed the wage cut and the terms of the stimulus package.” More:
In addition to several state and federal officials, participants in the April 15 conference call included an SEIU associate general counsel in Washington, a lobbyist for SEIU in California and a representative from SEIU’s policy staff in California, according to a list provided by the Schwarzenegger administration.
Translation: Do as I say, not as I do.