“I’m not really anti-union, I’m pro-worker,” Rep. Tim Scott insists. A freshman Republican from South Carolina’s first congressional district, Scott has staked out a strong position in favor of workplace democracy and union accountability.
That hasn’t earned him much support from union leaders, who consider him “the anti-union legislator in America, especially in the South,” he told the Heritage Foundation in our latest In the Green Room interview. But rank-and-file members are open to his views, Scott said.
But Scott noted that even his bill, the Employee Rights Act, which is reviled by union leaders, has appeal with rank-and-file members who see the rationale in actually having a say in whether their workplace is unionized.
The ERA, explained Heritage’s James Sherk, “guarantees workers a private, informed, uncoerced vote on unionizing” and “enables employees to re-elect (or unelect) their bargaining representatives every three years.” The latter right is one currently enjoyed by only 10 percent of currently unionized workers – a full 90 percent never got the chance to vote on their union’s certification.
Scott describes his bill as one that “empowers all employees to be part of the process of making the decisions that are necessary to say that this work place is a positive work environment for me, the employee.”
Scott also weighed in on an important issue for his home state: the National Labor Relations Board’s lawsuit against Boeing Corporation. The NLRB, he insisted, “is not legitimate, period.”
While Scott said he’s glad that the suit has been resolved, the manner in which it was resolved – an apparent attempt by Boeing to “appease the NLRB and the union” – is quite irksome. “I’m not quite sure it’s extortion,” he said, “but it’s a word I’ve become familiar with.”