Notwithstanding the victory dance the President performed last week in celebration of the reported 7.1 million sign-ups for health exchanges established by the so-called Affordable Care Act (ACA), otherwise known as Obamacare, across the country countless millions of employees and business owners are being harmed by this law. Specifically, many are struggling to deal with rapidly rising health-insurance costs foisted on them by the ACA itself and by its bureaucratic implementation.
As an editorial appearing in the Las Vegas Review-Journal April 2 (see the link below) reported, ACA-spawned problems are especially severe for hospitality industry employees like hotel and restaurant workers. To continue furnishing employees with health-insurance benefits roughly as good as they have in the past will cost Las Vegas hotels a lot more in the post-ACA world than it did before. A contract offer now on the table from a coalition of unionized hotels and casinos would require employees represented by Culinary Local 226 and Bartenders Local 165 to pay a portion of the increased health-insurance costs brought about by the ACA.
Of course, the ACA wouldn’t be the law of the land today were it not for the fact that top union bosses in Washington, D.C., including the hierarchy of UNITE HERE, the parent union of Culinary Local 226 and Bartenders Local 165, hadn’t put their forced union dues-fueled lobbying machine at full throttle four years ago to ensure that Obamacare would pass through Congress despite the American people’s strong opposition.
As the Review-Journal editorial explained, rather than face accountability with the union rank-and-file for having helped President Obama ram through a law that now stands to cut deep into worker paychecks, culinary and bartenders union bosses want someone else to “bear the cost of the union’s big mistake.”
The consequence of union bosses’ unwillingness to let their members feel the brunt of the union-label ACA’s exorbitant cost could be a strike that shuts down hotels, restaurants and casinos across Las Vegas. Of course, a strike would hurt workers even more than it would businesses and the city economy on the whole.
Whether “downtown housekeepers and restaurant workers” will actually be willing to help union chiefs save face by walking off their jobs remains to be seen. But what’s already clear is that, one way or the other, Las Vegas’s hospitality industry employees are about to take it on the chin as the result of UNITE HERE and other union bosses’ successful deployment of their forced dues-funded political army to pass Obamacare in 2010.
EDITORIAL: Downtown strike