According to the Associated Press, Sen. Arlen Specter (D-PA) announced Thursday that the “prospects are pretty good” for an Employee Free Choice compromise.
“[H]e said he’s been meeting with labor leaders and fellow senators in hopes of coming up with a compromise he could support.”
The details of that compromise will be crucial, and, for labor to be happy, would probably have to be pretty cosmetic. But, as the AP reminds us, “Specter has said he opposes the “card check” and arbitration provisions of the bill, [leaving] the door open to other changes that would help unions, such as speeding up the election process and giving unions more access to campaign at work sites.”
“Card check” and arbitration are the key components of the bill, and Specter, who was once and EFCA co-sponsor, knows how important they are. It would be hugely disappointing to labor if he didn’t come back around to supporting both provisions, at least in watered down forms. But if Specter went from full support of a bill to no support of the same bill in the span of a few months, it stands to reason he could turn right back around and support it all over again. We may have an answer soon.