Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley has an impressive record in terms of job growth which he recently attributed to his partnership with unions.
The state’s AAA credit rating, along with its top 10 ranking in job growth and its spot atop the state median income list, have led him to be an early mention as a possible 2016 presidential candidate. Speaking to reporters via conference call with Columbia University Professor Dorian Warren, O’Malley recently suggested that the best way to get our nation out of its current economic crisis would be to grow the middle class instead of allowing wealth to accumulate in fewer and fewer hands. He noted that Maryland’s economic prosperity has been “achieved by a partnership with unions, not by scapegoating labor.”
We don’t see unions as an impediment to growth but organized labor helps us grow and maintain balance, invest in skills of the workforce and ensure people receive a decent wage for a decent day’s work.
O’Malley sees the role of unions as pivotal in the future of America’s economy and is passing reforms that he thinks will help labor face down its opponents in the next decade.
Among these reforms — which are not viewed as universally pro-labor — is an effort to establish confidentiality privileges not unlike those enjoyed by attorneys and clients. A new law will improve communications among labor by protecting union reps who have received information in confidence during grievance proceedings.
O’Malley, who campaigned against Scott Walker in the Wisconsin Recall election, also spoke at the New Hampshire Democratic Convention where he asked union members and Democrats to “move forward, not back.” He went on to defend the President’s record in the face of weak job growth numbers.
“We’d all like a perfect and predictable story,” and blamed the “constipation Congress,” tea party and lack of cooperation across the aisle for a less-than-robust recovery.
“The recovery could be faster, but that would require compromise, pragmatism, and laser focus on common goals,” he said.
“Facts can be stubborn, but they can also be hopeful. Job creation is up. Unemployment is down. General Motors is alive. Osama bin Laden is dead.”