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Romney Opposes Expanding Collective Bargaining Rights for Public Workers

by Jon Melegrito  |  August 31, 2012

Mitt Romney
Mitt Romney

In keeping with the spirit of the anti-public sector union platform adopted this week at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., Mitt Romney declared yesterday that he will fully embrace an anti-worker agenda if he wins the White House.

In a written response to questions posed by the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), the Republican Presidential nominee said that “I would not support an expansion of collective bargaining rights for public employees.”

As governor of Massachusetts, Romney attempted to strip firefighters and police officers throughout the state of their collective bargaining rights. On the Presidential campaign trail, he backed the brazen efforts of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Ohio Gov. John Kasich to kill those same basic rights for state and local workers.

And similar anti-worker rhetoric was loud and clear in Tampa this week. Click here to read the worst of what was said by governors and right-wingers targeting us as proud union members. And sign our petition to say ‘No!” to union busting and the Romney-Ryan agenda.

The Republican platform adopted this week veers even further to the right than in previous years, when they gave at least grudging respect to American workers. This year there is no recognition of the importance of workers’ rights in our democracy. In fact, the platform encourages governors to launch Scott Walker-like attacks on public sector workers. The platform states: “We salute Republican governors and state legislators who have saved their states from fiscal disaster by reforming their laws governing public employee unions.”

“Watching the Republican National Convention this week, we’ve all had a front-row seat to how dangerously anti-union the GOP is and how devastating a Romney-Ryan victory would be for our members,” AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders said.

As Bill Fletcher Jr. of the Institute for Policy Studies puts it, Romney and Ryan want to eliminate labor unions because they see them as obstacles to their objectives of increasing wealth for those at the top. Unions, on the other hand, want to be assured of fair compensation, safe working conditions and retirement security so that the latter years of workers’ lives are not ones found in poverty, malnutrition and poor health. 

“Most of the world recognizes that these demands are basic human rights,” Fletcher adds. “Unfortunately, the Romney/Ryan ticket looks at them as obstacles to profit.”

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