TEAMSTER.ORG | The Republican Party platform, adopted at its convention in Cleveland this week, backs a national so-called right-to-work (RTW) law, slams federal workers and trashes the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for using federal minimum wage and overtime pay laws to deny “flexibility” to businesses. And it wants to abolish the federal minimum wage, letting states set their own.
“We support the right of states to enact right to work laws and call for a national law to protect the economic liberty of the modern workforce,” the GOP said. Those are code words for a national RTW law. And the GOP stops just short of demanding abolition of federal unions.
Party platforms lay down the principles the party expects its candidates, from the presidency on down, to adhere to. With GOP platform writers coming from the party’s business-oriented establishment wing, those principles are anti-union, anti-worker or both. Key passages include:
- A slam against regulations in general and NLRB and Labor Department regulations in particular, as bad for business: “We will revisit existing laws that delegate too much authority to regulatory agencies and review all current regulations for possible reform or repeal,” it says.
- Elimination of the minimum wage and the Jones Act – which says U.S.-flagged U.S.-crewed ships must carry goods between U.S. ports – in U.S. territories.
- After declaring the GOP would “challenge the anachronistic labor laws that limit workers’ freedom and lock them into the workplace rules of their great-grandfathers,” the platform takes aim at the NLRB, promising “to restore fairness and common sense” there.