Because trying to jam through a government takeover of health care worked out so well, Senate majority leader Harry Reid is trying to do the same on card check. Roll Call reports:
As Senate Democrats struggle to hammer out a compromise bill on union organizing, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is sketching a process for railroading the bill through the floor as quickly as possible to prevent Republicans from rallying a major campaign against it, senior Democratic aides said.
[. . .]
Cutting off debate on the bill would likely ignite a major partisan firestorm, and top Democrats will look to make their move as fast as possible, according to the Democratic aides.
“This is not the kind of thing where we could have a long, drawn-out rollout. We’d have to say, ‘Here’s the deal,’ and then get to the floor and get it passed before anyone can mobilize against it,” one leadership aide said.
The leadership aide argued that Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) would also have to agree to the deal before Reid would be willing to bring it to the floor, since any major changes to the bill in the House or in conference would likely make final passage impossible in the Senate.
Big Labor seems “cool” to any compromise measures and wants to jam the real deal — eradication of the secret ballot — before anyone figures out what is up. There’s “New Politics” for you — a special-interest group calling the shots, no public discussion, and a rush to vote on a piece of legislation that cannot garner public support. But what about those Red state senators? Won’t they be in a pickle? Perhaps Senate leaders think that endangering a few of their own is a small price to pay to make good on the debt owed to Big Labor, which spent hundreds of millions of dollars to elect them in 2008.
The hitch here, of course, is that however slow or fast they proceed, there is likely not filibuster-proof support for a measure that will abolish the secret ballot and provide for government mediators to impose contracts on private parties. And Reid feeling the need to resort to the hurry-up strategy once again tells you everything you need to know about the merits and politics of this bill.