I’ll admit it. When I was alerted to the fact that House Speaker John Boehner and Senator Rob Portman (both Ohio Republicans) would be speaking at the Associated Builders and Contractors’ (ABC) legislative conference in Washington, D.C. this morning, I figured I’d be sitting here now writing an article rebuking all sorts of out-of-touch arguments about Project Labor Agreements, Davis-Bacon laws and prevailing wages — the issues near and dear to unionized construction workers. This seemed like a reasonable assumption considering these are the very issues that the ABC aggressively pursues in an anti-union way on behalf of wealthy owners and its quote-unquote membership.
But for once, I’ve got to give it up for the crazy American horse race. The election so engulfs the political process that Portman and Boehner didn’t even bother with the nuts and bolts of destroying workers’ rights on construction job sites. Instead, it was all Obama everything. There were strong words for the President’s tax policies, regulatory approach, job-creation efforts and other vague things, but no mention of his executive order to mandate PLAs on federally funded projects; no mention of PLA bans in the states; no mention of continued attempts by House and Senate Republicans to take down Davis-Bacon on Capitol Hill. Nope, it was just Obama.
And thank God.
Watch the un-embeddable speeches at C-SPAN.