Jon Chesto of the Gatehouse News Service in Massachusetts provides a fascinating peek at the incestuous relationship between the Massachusetts political establishment and local union bosses. As we have seen with members of the House of Representatives and even presidential nominee Barack Obama, politicians are using the card check system to pressure companies to unionize and force workers into joining a union without a secret ballot election.
In Massachusetts, according to Mr. Chesto:
Everyone who does business in Boston knows that if you want to build a commercial project of any size in the city, you’ve got to go through the Menino administration and its Boston Redevelopment Authority.
But if the claims made by operators of the Courtyard by Marriott in Dorchester are true, you may have to get a union’s approval as well.
According to a lawsuit that has been filed, the Jiten Hotel Management Firm was trying to get approval to build a hotel but they could not get the attention of the Boston Development Authority. A Jiten vice president, working with then-Brockton Mayor Jack Yunits, lined up a meeting with Boston Mayor Tom Menino in Brockton to discuss the problem.
At the meeting, according to the suit, Menino said the hotel operators would need to sign a card-check agreement with Local 26 to ensure the hotel’s work force would be unionized.
Such an agreement allows a union to be recognized as long as it collects authorization cards from the majority of affected workers. Approve the agreement, the suit says Jiten was told, and the hotel is a go. Jiten had already plowed $3 million into the project, so Jiten president Nayan Patel signed the agreement. The next day, the BRA approved the hotel.
So let’s be clear — in order to get jobs created in Boston you must grease the palms of the union who in turn grease the palms of the politicians. It’s a vicious cycle that harms taxpayers and workers.