Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
Posted at 4:12 PM ET, 03/ 2/2011

Four national polls show solid support for public employees

By Greg Sargent

The First Read gang reports that the forthcoming NBC/WSJ poll, like other previously released surveys, will show strong public opposition to rolling back public employee bargaining rights:

In the poll, a whopping 68 percent find it acceptable requiring public employees to contribute more of their pay for retirement benefits; 63 percent are fine with requiring these employees to pay more for their health-care benefits; and 58 percent are OK with freezing public employees' salaries for one year.

But just 33 percent say it's acceptable -- and 62 percent say it's unacceptable -- to eliminate these employees' collective-bargaining rights as way to deal with state budget deficits.

Yes, the poll finds strong majorities want public employees to pony up more for benefits. But the Wisconsin public employee unions have already agreed to this. On the core question at the heart of the standoff -- whether it's acceptable to roll back bargaining rights -- a strong majority, 62 percent, is with the unions.

It gets better. I asked the First Read crew to send over the question's exact wording, which they graciously did. It asks whether people find it acceptable to "eliminate public employees' right to collectively bargain over health care, pensions and other benefits when negotiating a union contract."

That wording is a pretty fair approximation of what's being proposed in Wisconsin. So this should silence the talk in some quarters that polls showing strong support for the public employees are rooted in the public's lack of understanding of the issue. What's more, this is now the fourth national poll to find the public supports public employees against governors looking to roll back their bargaining rights. Gallup, the New York Times and Pew (to a slightly lesser degree) have all found the same.

Some folks on the right got very excited this morning because a new Quinnipiac Poll finds that more support limits on the bargaining rights of public employees than oppose it, 45-42. But the question wording asks whether people favor "limiting" bargaining rights. That word lends itself to open-ended interpretations and doesn't do justice to how transformative the proposal actually would be. And as noted above, NBC's more accurate description elicits far more opposition.

Indeed, the verdict is clear: Americans support public employees in this standoff. Whether that will impact the outcome of the fight, of course, remains to be seen. But the bigger story here -- one that will ripple far beyond what happens in Wisconsin -- is that public employees are not proving the easy scapegoat many predicted they would be, and when faced with the question of whether their fundamental union rights should be taken away, Americans have stepped up and answered with a firm No.

By Greg Sargent  | March 2, 2011; 4:12 PM ET
Categories:  Labor  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Breaking: Wisconsin Dems throw their weight behind drive to recall GOP Senators
Next: Happy Hour Roundup

Comments

Watch the right wing media keep a tight lid on the messaging on this issue. They'll be careful to treat their viewers/readers like mushrooms: keep them in the dark and feed them shite.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Most interesting bit from the Q poll:

"Women would limit bargaining 43 - 39 percent... Black voters back limits 49 - 37 percent."

I wonder if there is a chance to split some of the Dem core constituencies on this issue.

Hey Greg, do you have the breakdowns for these two demographics for your other polls?

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Has Greg bothered to show us this?

"Wisconsin GOP Senator Glenn Grothman chased, trapped by hecklers, saved by Dem. Rep. Hulsey"

http://dane101.com/current/2011/03/01/wisconsin_gop_senator_glenn_grothman_chased_trapped_by_hecklers_saved_by_dem_rep_

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 4:27 PM | Report abuse

sbj, that's the jackass I was referring to earlier who was on O'Donnell's show.

He deserved to get heckled for his BS, condescending remarks. Or do only white old politicians get to dismiss people?

People in WI are angry for a reason, not because they are "slobs."

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 4:30 PM | Report abuse

"They'll be careful to treat their viewers/readers like mushrooms"

BG could this not actually be totally appropriate? Perhaps they are simply adjusting their messages to the brainpower of their viewers/readers...although mushrooms may actually be brighter than the average teabagger. LOL

Posted by: rukidding7 | March 2, 2011 4:32 PM | Report abuse

BG

I saw that guy last night on O'Donnell as well..and yes he was a condescending pr!ck.
Just the kind of IGMGFY man SBJ admires.

Posted by: rukidding7 | March 2, 2011 4:33 PM | Report abuse

sbj,

LOL

You're kidding right?

He was not chased. He certainly didn't scared, and he wasn't running away. He was heckled, jeered, and yelled at.

Jesus.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | March 2, 2011 4:35 PM | Report abuse

ruk, what I'm hoping is that for folks who are either in a union, have been in one, wish they had one, or have family in one, they'll get a sense of what Fox and others have been feeding them.

A lot of good consciousness-raising out of this issue.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 4:35 PM | Report abuse

@bg: Heckling is fine - purty darned American if you ask me - but this was a case where another Rep felt the need to step in and physically protect the jackass.

What in the heck does being old and white have to do with anything? Why on earth would you bring it up?

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 4:35 PM | Report abuse

public employees are not proving the easy scapegoat many predicted they would be

Yay!

and when faced with the question of whether their fundamental union rights should be taken away

WTF? Fundamental union rights of public employees?

Oh well...that sounds like human rights and this is only about whether America takes away public employees' special status relative to their employer, or finds a way to fix what is actually wrong with America's class structure.

Posted by: shrink2 | March 2, 2011 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Because the percentage of older white men who have sailed through life without having to deal with discrimination, and then aim insults at others who are doing something legitimate to protect their rights, is an easily discernible pattern. No, not all older white guys are like this, but the lack of self-consciousness, not to mention conscience, amongst this demographic, is infuriating.

I'm an early-40s white guy and I will damn sure not be acting this way in 10+ years. Why? Because I respect difference, and I admire people who struggle against racism, sexism, and all the other discriminatory practices that drag this culture down.

If you ain't part of the solution, you're part of the problem.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Wisconsin Gov./Legislation gives a whole new meaning to negotiating in good faith. Now we seem to want to put a time frame on the good faith part. Like a built in engineered warranty to fail part.

Posted by: kidvid | March 2, 2011 4:49 PM | Report abuse

BG

It's sooo great to have you back! Yes what you are describing is what Barry Switzer first uttered and then I believe it was stolen by Biden..

These guys like SBJ were born on third base and think they've hit a triple.

Posted by: rukidding7 | March 2, 2011 4:49 PM | Report abuse

If polls are how we're going to run the country and decide big issues, then everyone in this thread is OK with the repeal of Obamacare? Thought so.

Posted by: bzod9999 | March 2, 2011 4:51 PM | Report abuse

“I really think if I had had to, I could have walked through the crowd and it would have been okay,” he told the Cap Times. “They’re loud, they’ll give you the finger, and they yell at you, but I really think deep down inside they’re just mostly college kids having fun, just like they’re having fun sleeping with their girfriends on air mattresses. That’s the guts of that crowd.”

If you watch sbj3's video, you can see there are a ton of cameras, camera phones etc. and this is pretty much the most violent act we have seen. Will any republicans admit these have been non-violent protests?

Posted by: ashotinthedark | March 2, 2011 4:52 PM | Report abuse

kidvid, the Gov trying to take away collective bargaining rights IS negoatiation, and demonstrates exactly why public employees need that right now more than ever. They are the ones who are protecting the integrity of the state, not the Gov.

He's trying to turn it into Wississippi.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 4:53 PM | Report abuse

If polls are how we're going to run the country and decide big issues, then everyone in this thread is OK with the repeal of Obamacare? Thought so.

Posted by: bzod9999
---------------------------------------

Seriously, after all the "shoving it down our throats" comments during the health care debate you have the audacity to post this?

Posted by: ashotinthedark | March 2, 2011 4:54 PM | Report abuse

bzod9999, yep.

Just so it's replaced with single payer, which was polling really high before the GOP blocked any effort get sane reform.

ruk, please tell this caller what he's won.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 4:55 PM | Report abuse

bzod

"If polls are how we're going to run the country and decide big issues, then everyone in this thread is OK with the repeal of Obamacare? Thought so."

ABSOLUTELY. Since the polls showed the nation wanted a single payer Medicare for all solution. I'm sure you're cool with that since that's what poll after poll indicated AMERICANS preferred right?

http://www.wpasinglepayer.org/PollResults.html

Posted by: rukidding7 | March 2, 2011 4:58 PM | Report abuse

"... saved by Dem. Rep. Hulsey"


Too bad, a turncoat Dem:-)

BGinCHI said -
"No, not all older white guys are like this, but the lack of self-consciousness, not to mention conscience, amongst this demographic, is infuriating."

Being in that demographic, I too find it infuriating. It's like the 1960s passed them by. They are part of the "I got mine, so screw you crowd." The same kind of people who will never vote YES on a school bond issue because they no longer have kids in school, so the hell with the rest of you. They think that they are patriotic Americans, but they have no sense of civic responsibility.

Posted by: filmnoia | March 2, 2011 5:00 PM | Report abuse

"I wonder if there is a chance to split some of the Dem core constituencies on this issue."

sbj3, are you serious? I don't think fighting with strangers on post it boards is funny or interesting, so I am not trying to set you up.

Do you really think Republicans should consider splitting "women" from "blacks"? Just say yes or no or tell me to piss off, but if you are serious, then we should talk. It might be fun.

Posted by: shrink2 | March 2, 2011 5:00 PM | Report abuse

BG

Great minds eh...I was already responding to bzod..and then come back to find...hope the link shows him what he's won. LMAO

Posted by: rukidding7 | March 2, 2011 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Bzod is a fraud.

In other news, water is wet and...

Seriously, in other news, I know this Wisconsin story is big, but can we please have MORE REPORTING on the fact that the Republican Party is trying to kill the recovery in every way possible?

They are de-funding the IRS which brings in $10 for every $1 spent on audits, liens and property seizures from tax cheats

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2011_03/028250.php

Earlier today, Bernanke said that the House GOP's 2011 spending plan would likely cost "a couple hundred thousand jobs," a number he called "not trivial."

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2011_03/028248.php

Are we ever going to read about these issues again?

Seems like almost nobody in the Professional Left even cares at all. And that sucks because jobs and the economy are consistently the most important issues to Americans.

These stories have not been covered at all today by Plum Line, TPM, Daily Kos, Think Progress, Political Wire...

Cmon people. Does anyone even have a response?

Posted by: ronnieandrush | March 2, 2011 5:02 PM | Report abuse

@bg: "If you ain't part of the solution, you're part of the problem."

If you are going to inject race into every issue where there's not a shred of evidence that racism had anything to do with anything, then you, my friend, are a part of the problem.

And ruk: Born on 3rd? That really hurts. You have no idea of my upbringing.

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 5:02 PM | Report abuse

film, couldn't agree more. Selfishness is not a virtue, despite what that terrible, terrible novelist would like people to believe.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 5:03 PM | Report abuse

"sense of civic responsibility"

frikin' socialist

We have learned that all great society/social welfare program money should have been given to church charities and then there would be no problem with poor women and poor colored people.

Posted by: shrink2 | March 2, 2011 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Ethan, the media is wired for Repubs. Period. Not sure if that's gonna change before it's too late.

That they can't understand basic economics, and that they've been fooled by the fraud of supply-side econ for all these years, and yet are the very people who report on this subject is keeping us from making sound decisions as a country.

Widening gap between the rich and poor? Magic. Or a random event.

Media fail.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 5:07 PM | Report abuse

@shrink: "Do you really think Republicans should consider splitting "women" from "blacks"?

There must be some misunderstanding...

If the GOP could get a portion of women to split from the Dem party, and/or a portion of the black demo to split from the Dem party. (Just as they try to with Palin and gay marriage, respectively.)

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 5:07 PM | Report abuse

@filmnoia

"The same kind of people who will never vote YES on a school bond issue because they no longer have kids in school, so the hell with the rest of you."

You have just succinctly described why Florida is 41st in the nation in education.

Posted by: rukidding7 | March 2, 2011 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Ethan, I suggest Steve Benen over at Political Animal for keeping up with wonkier stuff:

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2011_03/028250.php

Posted by: Michigoose | March 2, 2011 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Wow, this is low, even by Plum Line standards.

Let's look at these few choice words. first we have Mr Sargent's description of a poll that Mr Sargent believes supports his continuing desire to hammer the taxpayers:
"That wording is a pretty fair approximation of what's being proposed in Wisconsin"

Did anybody see the exact wording of the question? No, all we got was the snippet Mr Sargent chose to share. Note carefully where the quotation marks begin:
'It asks whether people find it acceptable to "eliminate public employees' right to collectively bargain over health care, pensions and other benefits when negotiating a union contract."'

See? We don't get the whole thing. And, skeptical me, I wonder what the question actually was. The link didn't have it.

then Mr Sargent feels the compulsion to down play another poll that, well, it just doesn't support Mr Sargent's continuing desire to hammer the taxpayers. Here's the words chosen by our gracious host:
'But the question wording asks whether people favor "limiting" bargaining rights. That word lends itself to open-ended interpretations and doesn't do justice to how transformative the proposal actually would be. And as noted above, NBC's more accurate description elicits far more opposition.

In this case the ONLY word from the poll question Mr Sargent choses to share is in quotes. We don't know what the rest of the question says without following the link and if you do here is what you'll read:
"38. In order to reduce state budget deficits, would you support or oppose limiting collective bargaining for public employees? "

See? Look at the difference between the two and you'll understand the ruse. When asked about the real goal: reducing state deficits, the response is not to Mr Sargent's liking.

We don't know if the same language about deficits was in the question he didn't completely share. My guess is that it isn't.

Why not ask this Mr Sargent: Would like to see you taxes rise continually to fund the compensation of state employees?

Polls are basically useless. They are the media talking about themselves. Dana Milbanks did enough of that for one day.


Posted by: skipsailing28 | March 2, 2011 5:10 PM | Report abuse

To those who replied to my question, you do realize that by adding your own cherry-picked poll results, you are unintentionally proving my point, right? You have single-payer poll results, I have repeal results, Greg's got ridiculously skewed NBC/WSJ results, etc. It all means exactly zero until it's voted on. If you think that union support is a winner for your "guys", by all means run on it. I personally think you will be unhappy with the results.

Posted by: bzod9999 | March 2, 2011 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Breaking on TPM:

Huck Hits the Sleaze Pedal

Huckabee says he misspoke yesterday about saying President Obama grew up in Kenya. So why is he back today saying Obama's a Muslim?

Story shortly.

--Josh Marshall

Posted by: suekzoo1 | March 2, 2011 5:14 PM | Report abuse

@Michigoose, jobs and the economy are NOT wonky. They are bread and butter issues. We neglect them (as a party and a country) at our own risk. I literally cannot believe that we (on the left) don't know that by now.

@BG, I was (and have been) SPECIFICALLY talking about left wing blogosphere. PL, TPM, Think Progress, DKos. The only ones who I've seen have reported on Bernanke's comments earlier this morning were Benen and POLITICO! POLITICO, but not the mainstays of the left wing blogosphere! It's enough to drive me mad.

@Bfraud, this is from the article on WSJ, hope you choke on it coward:

"""Eliminating collective bargaining rights for public-sector workers over health care, pensions or other benefits would be either “mostly unacceptable” or “totally unacceptable,” 62% of those surveyed said. Only 33% support such limits.

The results don’t bode well for Wisconsin’s newly elected Republican governor, Scott Walker, who is locked in a standoff with statehouse Democrats and unionized state workers over these rights.

...

77% of the 1,000 adults interviewed for the poll think unionized state and municipal employees should have the same rights as those union members who work for private companies."""

http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2011/03/02/wsjnbc-poll-strong-support-for-bargaining-rights/

Posted by: ronnieandrush | March 2, 2011 5:16 PM | Report abuse

"If the GOP could get a portion of women to split from the Dem party, and/or a portion of the black demo to split from the Dem party"

"Most interesting bit from the Q poll: Women would limit bargaining 43 - 39 percent... Black voters back limits 49 - 37 percent."

Ok, based on these poll results, how could the GOP get a portion of women to split from the Democratic party and a portion of the the black demo to split from the Democratic party?

You say setting them against each other would be a misunderstanding. The thing is, women are not really a Democratic Party core constituency.

Posted by: shrink2 | March 2, 2011 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Ethan, got it. Maybe they're tired of Krugman always being right and no one listening to him.

He's certainly been the Cassandra of the last 5 years.

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 5:18 PM | Report abuse

If you think that union support is a winner for your "guys", by all means run on it.
-------------------------------------
Of course what you mean by "union support" is rather important. Since the objection to the Wisconsin proposal is the removal of collective bargaining right except as to increase wages up to the level of the CPI, opposing the proposal makes you a rather lukewarm union supporter.

I tell you what, I'll run on my platform of increased union contribution to healthcare and pensions, a pay freeze and furlough days while you run on your teachers, cops and fire fighters are thugs and live lavish lifestyles platform.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | March 2, 2011 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Ethan, I meant "wonky" only in the most wonderful sense of the word! :-)

It's too much deep thought for many people, sadly.

Posted by: Michigoose | March 2, 2011 5:22 PM | Report abuse

@shrink: "Women are not really a Democratic Party core constituency."

Haven't they been trending Democratic for the past 20 plus years or so?

"Based on these poll results, how could the GOP get a portion of ... the black demo to split from the Democratic party?"

By doing what Walker is doing in WI? "Demonize" public employee collective bargaining as one of the causes of state budget problems that disproportionately impact minorities and women.

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 5:25 PM | Report abuse

ashotinthedark,
Never said they were thugs or that they had lavish lifestyles, nor would that be my platform. You're absolutely correct that the phrasing is of paramount importance, as is the education of voters as to what the arguments entail. I am of the mind that bringing union contracts into the sunlight will result in less public acceptance and support. I have seen it firsthand in NJ. You are on the other side of the debate, which is fine. I don't think there is anything that either one of us could say to sway the other completely, but I do think it is a bit of a leap to extrapolate poll results into a mandate for "your" side, which was my initial (attempted) point to GS.

Posted by: bzod9999 | March 2, 2011 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Sheila Jackson Lee, voice of the Dem party:

"You stupid motherf....r".

http://dailycaller.com/2011/03/02/congressional-bosses-from-hell-sheila-jackson-lee/

Posted by: drowningpuppies | March 2, 2011 5:38 PM | Report abuse

"""as is the education of voters as to what the arguments entail"""

Hahaha!

Whatever you do, don't let B-fraud "educate" you on anything. He doesn't know the different between profit and revenue!

And he thinks that it is wise economic policy to give tax breaks to oil companies that make billions upon billions of dollars in profits!

That B-fraud. Or should I say B-fraid.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | March 2, 2011 5:41 PM | Report abuse

So if Republicans were to, "Demonize" public employee collective bargaining as one of the causes of state budget problems that disproportionately impact minorities and women," they might, I am guessing, realize public employee unions are...oh I can't figure it out.

When you say,

"Women would limit bargaining 43 - 39 percent... Black voters back limits 49 - 37 percent," and that this is an opportunity for Republicans, can you say why that is?

Is it in the 43 to 49 percent difference between women and black peoples' support for collective bargaining for public employees?
If it is, I can't see an opportunity for Republicans to exploit this difference.

In fact, if Republicans did try again, they would drive numbers the other way. Women and blacks might get together (oh the horror!) and realize the Republican party of white men was trying to get between them, again.

"I wonder if there is a chance to split some of the Dem core constituencies on this issue."

Republicans have to have something positive to offer. Trying to split Democrats with fear, that was all Willie Horton and stuff like that. Republicans should focus on something that they can actually do that is right and good and upon which people would like to agree.


Posted by: shrink2 | March 2, 2011 5:43 PM | Report abuse

I don't think there is anything that either one of us could say to sway the other completely, but I do think it is a bit of a leap to extrapolate poll results into a mandate for "your" side, which was my initial (attempted) point to GS.
------------------------------------

I know you never called them thugs, but you equally misstated the opinion of most democrats with your blanket "support union" comment. I was making a rhetorical point. The thug opinion is not all that uncommon, though, among conservative posters here.

Greg didn't say it was a mandate, he said it shows public support for collective bargaining rights and that public unions won't be the easy scapegoat republicans appeared to think they were. Do you disagree with those two point, poll aside?

What do you mean that bringing them to light will lead to less support. I agree that if unions across the country oppose taking any cuts, like they have in NJ, they will take a big hit in public opinion. I'm guessing unions elsewhere can read the tea leaves and won't be as inflexible as the NJ unions.

I would guess that we agree a lot more on unions than we disagree.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | March 2, 2011 5:43 PM | Report abuse

"Republicans have to have something positive to offer. "

What do the repubs have to offer women besides attacking our reproductive rights, denial of equal pay protections, denial of insurance access for our families and children, denial of safeguarding the food supply? With all that, I'd bet it's going to take way more than collective bargaining to sway any women who are not supportive of it.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | March 2, 2011 5:52 PM | Report abuse

sue, tax breaks for millionaires?

Unfunded wars?

Posted by: BGinCHI | March 2, 2011 5:56 PM | Report abuse

"What do the repubs have to offer women?"

This is a good question. It never gets asked enough.

sbj when you ask, "Haven't they been trending Democratic for the past 20 plus years or so?" Is that for lack of splitting?

Posted by: shrink2 | March 2, 2011 5:58 PM | Report abuse

@shrink: We are having some kind of failure to communicate here.

"Black voters back limits 49 - 37 percent," and that this is an opportunity for Republicans, can you say why that is?"

Black voters support the Dems over the GOP by, I'm not sure, 80-20 percent? But if 49% of blacks actually disagree with the Dems on this issue of public employee collective bargaining, there is a chance for the GOP to get their vote. As in, "state programs that help your community are being cut because we can't afford these pub emp union pensions. The Dems would rather cut these programs than limit collective bargaining."

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 5:58 PM | Report abuse

"""Trying to split Democrats with fear, that was all Willie Horton and stuff like that."""

You speak as if that was past tense.

Floyd Brown -- responsible for the William Horton ad -- is still hard at work spreading hatred.

Btw, do you know that they called him "Willie" Horton even though nobody called him Willie? It was to make him sound more "ethnic".

@Wikipedia:

"""Beginning on September 21, 1988, the Americans for Bush arm of the National Security Political Action Committee (NSPAC), under the auspices of Floyd Brown, began running a campaign ad entitled "Weekend Passes", using the Horton case to attack Dukakis. The ad was produced by media consultant Larry McCarthy, who had previously worked for Roger Ailes. After clearing the ad with television stations, McCarthy added a menacing mug shot of Horton, who is African American. He called the image "every suburban mother's greatest fear." Additionally, although Horton actually went by "William", the ad's creators changed his name to "Willie." The ad was run as an independent expenditure, separate from the Bush campaign, which claimed not to have had any role in its production."""

Floyd Brown -- a Republican Establishment operative -- now runs a series of Tea Party email lists that regularly cite articles on birther conspiracies, articles calling for the impeachment of President Obama, articles calling for immediate draconian cuts of over $1T to the federal budget.

Pretty unreal the kind of filth in the Republican Party that goes wholly un-reported in the mainstream media. Just totally ignored.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | March 2, 2011 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Ok I think I get the argument (forget women for now), this was about the possibility of pitting black people on the dole against collective bargaining for public employees.

"state programs that help your community are being cut because we can't afford these pub emp union pensions. The Dems would rather cut these programs than limit collective bargaining."

I have to go, but thank you for talking. I do think Republicans would do better attracting Democratic voters away from their party affiliation if they offered something positive to voting blocs rather than trying to set them against each other, but well get after this topic again soon.

Posted by: shrink2 | March 2, 2011 6:07 PM | Report abuse

@shrink: I don't understand your question.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/118207/Republicans-Face-Steep-Uphill-Climb-Among-Women.aspx

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 6:07 PM | Report abuse

sbj: "But if 49% of blacks actually disagree with the Dems on this issue of public employee collective bargaining, there is a chance for the GOP to get their vote. "

Doubtful. There is far, far more that blacks agree with the Dems on, and more importantly, disagree with the GOP, that this will be insignificant. A couple of the bigger turds in the GOP punchbowl would be:

How they have collectively treated the first black POTUS.

How they have renewed their embrace of the Confederacy while trying to discount the facts of slavery.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | March 2, 2011 6:07 PM | Report abuse

@sue: I agree with your point. Please don't misunderstand. My initial point was to wonder (aloud) if this drive against public unions was, in part, begun by the GOP because it was viewed as a potential wedge issue.

I'm not going to argue that blacks or women should vote for the GOP (or the Dems).

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 6:11 PM | Report abuse

As many here concentrate on what's going on in WI, in Ohio the GOP is well on its way today in passing a law to screw the public employee unions, including cops and fire fighters. Kasich is a corporate toady and a rancid piece of garbage of the first order. Next time one of these GOP Ohio hypocrites say "we honor your service" to a cop or fireman, I hope they choke and turn blue.

Posted by: filmnoia | March 2, 2011 6:12 PM | Report abuse

sbj, if the GOP saw collective bargaining as a wedge issue, it seems they were way off in their calculations.

BTW, the collective bargaining vote in OH was just passed by 1 vote. In the name of "saving money," the bill includes this little gem:

"Sec. 3101.01 of S.B. 5: ... A marriage may only be entered into by one man and one woman. Any marriage between persons of the same sex is against the strong public policy of this state. Any marriage between persons of the same sex shall have no legal force or effect in this state and, if attempted to be entered into in this state, is void ab initio and shall not be recognized by this state. The recognition or extension by the state of the specific statutory benefits of a legal marriage to non-marital relationships between persons of the same sex or different sexes is against the strong public policy of this state. Any public act, record or judicial proceeding of this state, as defined in section 9.82 of the Revised Code, that extends the specific statutory benefits of legal marriage to non-marital relationships between persons of the same sex or different sexes is void."

That ought to make the LGBT community damn happy, huh?

Posted by: suekzoo1 | March 2, 2011 6:17 PM | Report abuse

@sue: "That ought to make the LGBT community damn happy, huh?"

Well I won't be vacationing in Cleveland anytime soon!

Posted by: sbj3 | March 2, 2011 6:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure Republicans have a few issues to which to split the black vote with. It's just that they put in ten times as much effort in driving them away. A good part of GWB's electoral success was his ability to attract Hispanic voters. But since Bush (and McCain - also relatively popular with Hispanics), the GOP has had a concerted effort to drive them away.

The GOP has to make a hell of a lot of repairs with the black community before it can try and draw them away from Democrats. And it will take a few election cycles. Republicans are probably better served in the short term by trying to continue to disenfranchise blacks rather than to win their votes.

Posted by: DDAWD | March 2, 2011 6:21 PM | Report abuse

All, Happy Hour Roundup posted:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2011/03/happy_hour_roundup_197.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | March 2, 2011 6:27 PM | Report abuse

@sbj-

Re: Minorities splitting from Democratic Party over this: they make substantially less in Right-to-Work states already. So, it they care about their children's educations, which I assume any sane person does, they won't want to have the (lack) of education funding in these so-called "business-friendly" states. I also assume they want healthcare, as well-another area where they are better off supporting Dems.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | March 2, 2011 6:42 PM | Report abuse

@bzod9999: 18% of Americans want the PPACA to be repealed.

You are wrong again.

Posted by: JRM2 | March 2, 2011 7:37 PM | Report abuse

Many of the commentters just look at benefits, pensions and health care and want them reduced for public employees. They don't look at wages for comparable private employees. It is well known that at the request of politicians who want to defer costs to the next guy, public employees accepted lower wages in return for better benefits. Your can think of these benefits as deferred wages. It is, of course, equally fraudelent to just look at wages.

The only correct way to see if public employees are overcompensated is to look at total compensation with comparable private employees. This has been done in a number of studies. here are some:

"Jeffrey Keefe, an associate professor at the Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations, said public employees do not make more than comparable private employees. According to Keefe, comparing private and public employees with the same educational level, experience and work schedule shows private employees make 11 percent more in wages and 5 percent more in total compensation than public workers."

"The nonpartisan National Institute on Retirement Security found that, on average, total compensation is 6.8 percent less for state employees and 7.4 percent less for local employees than for comparable non-government workers."

Syl Schieber, a private expert on pensions says that many of the other studies value the pensions of public employees too low, but even after making his correction he comes up with the conclusion that the total compensation of comparable public employees is less. ("Political Economy of Public Sector Retirement Plans")

Then there is the study of Bender and Heywood who I believe are at the U of Wisc.

Finally the is the result of the Federal Compensation Board which was that on average, federal employees are paid 24% less than comparable private on

Posted by: lensch | March 2, 2011 8:51 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, previous comment got truncated.

Finally the is the result of the Federal Compensation Board which was that on average, federal employees are paid 24% less than comparable private ones. This does not include benefits, but if you take the largest difference in benefits from the other studies (Scheiber's) which is 10.8% and subtract it, you would get a difference of 13.2% less total compensation for public employees.

Posted by: lensch | March 2, 2011 8:53 PM | Report abuse

"What do the repubs have to offer women?"

This is a good question. It never gets asked enough.

==

Uh, what do they have to offer anyone worth less than nine figures? I'm serious.

There isn't a single GOP creep on this forum who stands to materially benefit from the Republican agenda. Not a single one. We could probably get them to castrate and blind themselves if we could convince them that liberals would be outraged.

Posted by: caothien9 | March 2, 2011 10:51 PM | Report abuse

I'm a state worker from Wisconson, and all I could do is run the numbers on Walker's budget repair bill and considering the give back with furlough days and the return of my dues it's going to cost me about $2000 extra for the benefit package. Not bad I figure considering there's a bunch who've taken a bigger hit, and the rest of the package is paid by taxpayers. In terms of collective bargaining. I got to say my union first told Walker to forget it. Then he figured why bother negotiating as it would only cost money. It was when the union figured out (after about two days) that there was no public support in fighting against the $ add-ons, they made collective bargaining the issue. Walker had experience with public unions not bargaining and just taking layoffs when he was a county exec so I guess he'd be stupid not to go for this now. I can't really say I need my union as my same job in private sector would not have collective bargaining so why not let me decide as a state worker? I can see that this is now becoming a bigger fight for the unions than for some of us workers since we always have a chance to reverse it in 2012 or 2014. We have to recognize it is the Republicans turn.

Posted by: Rudolph1 | March 3, 2011 12:12 AM | Report abuse

can see that this is now becoming a bigger fight for the unions than for some of us workers since we always have a chance to reverse it in 2012 or 2014.

==

If you think expanding your rights against the wishes of monied interests is as easy as losing them, then you are hopelessly naive.

==

"We have to recognize it is the Republicans turn."

==

You had me till this point. I call troll. I doubt you're in WI at all.

Posted by: caothien9 | March 3, 2011 2:24 AM | Report abuse

Reagan Republicans were union workers upset about long-haired hippies. Now that Republicans have destroyed America, they're realizing they've been had. Only the real rightwing crazies and religious whackos call themselves Republicans.

Posted by: thebobbob | March 3, 2011 12:58 PM | Report abuse

sometimes, when i watch Obama speaking, i wonder whether he understands what he is reading on the teleprompter

Posted by: Aldol | March 3, 2011 3:01 PM | Report abuse

sometimes, when i watch Obama speaking, i wonder whether he understands what he is reading on the teleprompter

Posted by: Aldol | March 3, 2011 3:01 PM | Report abuse

sometimes, when i watch Obama speaking, i wonder whether he understands what he is reading on the teleprompter

Posted by: Aldol | March 3, 2011 3:02 PM | Report abuse

I like Oprah but i don't want her to be president!

Dems, face it, your social engineering scam with Obama has failed.

Posted by: numbersch13 | March 3, 2011 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Nice try guys.

Spin all you want...

But it all boils down to this.

This is about the public employee unions protecting their cushy pay and benefits..and Democrats protecting their power base..

.. versus the taxpayers.

People don't like to limit collective bargaining privileges..sure..but when its pointed out that its that or the public employee unions continuing to pick their wallet..

...you are screwed.

My money is on the taxpayers.

Posted by: livfreeordi | March 4, 2011 12:32 AM | Report abuse

Nice try guys.

Spin all you want...

But it all boils down to this.

This is about the public employee unions protecting their cushy pay and benefits..and Democrats protecting their power base..

.. versus the taxpayers.

People don't like to limit collective bargaining privileges..sure..but when its pointed out that its that or the public employee unions continuing to pick their wallet..

...you are screwed.

My money is on the taxpayers.

Posted by: livfreeordi | March 4, 2011 12:33 AM | Report abuse

Americans should study up on the root causes of the current financial debacle . they would find that 35 years of outsourcing jobs leading to a decaying tax-base , then on top of very short sighted REpublican leadership that kept America undiversified on energy and transportation policies kept the money flowing to the rich , multi-nationals that the REpublicans sold America out to . And finally , the evil spectre that Americans still refuse to agknowledge , that Americans have stood blindly by , while the multi-nationals have used American military and intelligence to meddle and kill for oil and power , without conscience , period . So many Americans say that they only did as ordered , well so did the nazis , and seems to Me that there is some kind of hell to pay , You know , sins of the father . . . . . . . Go Ahead REpublicans , pretend that you are not responsible for Your actions . . . . . HELL TO PAY !

Posted by: beenliedto | March 4, 2011 6:18 AM | Report abuse

Americans should be happy for our Union Brothers and Sisters that have Union jobs and work to procure one for ourselves ! These are evil times when how good You are at the workplace doesn't mean as much as what political party you're aligned with . Rich multi-national REpublicans can recruit mindless minions with the promise of lots of cash . Real Americans are intelligent in unconventional ways and the REpublican brainbdead , cultish way of life is just to stifling . A strong nation is one that spreads the wealth around and promotes creativity and allows spare time to devote these pursuits . REpublican leadership offers 80 work weeks for minimum wage and the children fend for themselves while their parents work to make rich multi-national REpublicans wealthier !

Posted by: beenliedto | March 4, 2011 6:37 AM | Report abuse

Any American worker who is aware of what has been going on can plainly see all of the rights they have lost beginning with Reagan and all lost rights was under republican control. The repubs voted against all minimum wage increases, voted against social security, against medicare, against veterans rights {Even John McCain} against any health care except tax cuts for the insurance companies. If you think things have gotten worse just wait as they are now trying to eliminate "CHILD LABOR LAWS" in Missouri and a U.S. senator in Utah {Republican Mike Lee} What does it take to wake up this country?????

Posted by: SWAMPYPD | March 4, 2011 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company