Republicans nationwide enact back-up plan after losing elections: just reject the results

Addy Baird

Addy Baird Reporter, ThinkProgress

Republicans across the country are undermining voters, with lame duck legislatures aiming to strip power from incoming Democratic governors, threatening not to seat a state senator-elect in Pennsylvania, and refusing to implement a ballot initiative in Utah.

On Wednesday, lawmakers in Wisconsin passed a bill that would give the legislature control of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. board, make it easier for legislators to hire private attorneys, limit early voting to two weeks, and require Gov.-elect Tony Evers (D) to get permission from the legislature to ban guns in the state Capitol, among other measures.

Outgoing Gov. Scott Walker (R) has signaled that he plans to sign the bill into law. As part of their lame duck session, lawmakers also approved 82 Walker appointees in a single day, filling a seat that has been vacant for a year and putting a top Walker aide at the head of the state Public Service Commission.

Similarly, in Michigan, the Republican state legislature is working to undermine the authority of Gov.-elect Gretchen Whitmer (D), the state attorney general-elect, and the secretary of state-elect on campaign finance and other legal issues. As The Detroit Free Press and The Washington Post both noted, all three of the newly elected state officials are women.

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These attempts have drawn numerous comparisons to what the North Carolina state legislature did two years ago, when Republicans used a lame duck session to strip then Gov.-elect Roy Cooper’s (D) power over cabinet appointments, gave the GOP power over the state board of elections, and worked to make the state’s judicial system more partisan. Cooper has been caught in legal fights over the legislation for nearly two years.

A little further east, in Pennsylvania, state Sen.-elect Lindsey Williams (D) was required to provide copies of her driver’s licenses, employment history, tax information, and home purchase or rental agreements, among any other documents she thinks are relevant, as Republicans claim she’s lying about meeting residency requirements

Williams was given just one week, as the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette recently reported, to produce the paperwork, and Republicans are threatening not to seat her, despite the fact that she repeatedly has said that she has lived in the state for at least four years, a requirement for state senators outlined in the state constitution. Just weeks before the election, Republicans unsuccessfully tried to get her removed from the ballot.

And Republicans in Utah are facing some harsh words from voters after throwing out Proposition 2, a ballot initiative that passed with flying colors in the state, replacing it instead with the Utah Medical Cannabis Act.

The replacement bill, which was developed with the Mormon Church, more tightly restricts the drug than the already-restrictive Prop 2 would have, significantly reducing the number of dispensaries permitted and almost completely restricting edibles.

All the while, there is mounting evidence in North Carolina’s 9th congressional district that Republicans tried to steal the election for Mark Harris, hiring people to collect absentee and mail-in ballots. Though details are still fuzzy, one thing is for sure, as ThinkProgress’ Adam Peck wrote earlier this week: Harris narrowly won both the Republican primary and the general election thanks to nearly impossible margins from absentee voters.

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Reposted from ThinkProgress

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Association of Letter Carriers

From the AFL-CIO

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Name of Union: National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)

Mission: To unite fraternally all city letter carriers employed by the U.S. Postal Service for their mutual benefit; to obtain and secure rights as employees of the USPS and to strive at all times to promote the safety and the welfare of every member; to strive for the constant improvement of the Postal Service; and for other purposes. NALC is a single-craft union and is the sole collective-bargaining agent for city letter carriers.

Current Leadership of Union: Fredric V. Rolando serves as president of NALC, after being sworn in as the union's 18th president in 2009. Rolando began his career as a letter carrier in 1978 in South Miami before moving to Sarasota in 1984. He was elected president of Branch 2148 in 1988 and served in that role until 1999. In the ensuing years, he worked in various roles for NALC before winning his election as a national officer in 2002, when he was elected director of city delivery. In 2006, he won election as executive vice president. Rolando was re-elected as NALC president in 2010, 2014 and 2018.

Brian Renfroe serves as executive vice president, Lew Drass as vice president, Nicole Rhine as secretary-treasurer, Paul Barner as assistant secretary-treasurer, Christopher Jackson as director of city delivery, Manuel L. Peralta Jr. as director of safety and health, Dan Toth as director of retired members, Stephanie Stewart as director of the Health Benefit Plan and James W. “Jim” Yates as director of life insurance.

Number of Members: 291,000 active and retired letter carriers.

Members Work As: City letter carriers.

Industries Represented: The United States Postal Service.

History: In 1794, the first letter carriers were appointed by Congress as the implementation of the new U.S. Constitution was being put into effect. By the time of the Civil War, free delivery of city mail was established and letter carriers successfully concluded a campaign for the eight-hour workday in 1888. The next year, letter carriers came together in Milwaukee and the National Association of Letter Carriers was formed.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work