Have the Republicans lost all sense of reality? In the midst of a crushing recession, our country is hemorrhaging jobs. According to Think Progress, the Labor Department reported we lost 598,000 jobs in January, and 1.8 million in the last three months. The livelihoods of millions of Americans and our entire economy are at stake, and yet GOP obstructionists are stonewalling President Obama's economic stimulus plan and the nomination of Hilda Solis for Labor Secretary.
The Senate Labor committee postponed Solis' nomination yesterday because of a recent USA Today report about her husband's outstanding California tax liens. (NOTE: it was her husband's auto repair business, not anything to do with Solis herself.) Though the tax liens have since been repaid, Sen. Mike Enzi (R-WY) and his Republican cohorts are still delaying the confirmation vote, claiming they need to investigate Solis' involvement with American Rights at Work (ARAW), a pro-labor non-profit. But this really boils down to the GOP's inherent fears over the Employee Free Choice Act, a bill Solis co-sponsored in the House that would enable workers to unionize more easily and negotiate for equitable wages and benefits and safer working conditions.
As David Dayen wrote over at Calitics:
The American Rights at Work thing is a complete red herring. She was a representative figure for those who supported Employee Free Choice in Congress. She is not a lobbyist. She supported a bill. And so denying her free-speech rights seems ridiculous to the extreme.
Solis might understand the needs of workers better than anyone in Congress. There's no question she could help ensure President Obama's plan to create 3.6 million jobs by next year actually happens. We must fight like hell to get her approved. Join this Facebook page and help confirm Hilda Solis now. Then, sign American Rights at Work's petition to support the Employee Free Choice, where you can snag their Employee Free Choice widget for your own personal blog.