Bass, Guinta vote to strike down Obama-backed labor rule
New Hampshire’s two Republican Congressmen, Frank Guinta (NH-01) and Charlie Bass (NH-02), continued racking up conservative votes last week, casting votes in favor of the FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act on Thursday. The bill would revoke a recent ruling by the little-known National Mediation Board (NMB), which regulates union elections within the air and rail industries. The ruling, made in 2010, overturned decades-old policy of the Board in order to make it easier for unions to take hold in the workplace.
The NMB ruling has frequently been cited as one of many examples of the Obama administration governing by fiat when it is unable to achieve its policy goals through legislation.
As the push to pass the FAA bill and rollback the pro-union ruling picked up steam on Capitol Hill, President Obama finally spoke out on the eve of the vote, threatening a Presidential veto if the bill was passed as-is.
A bipartisan effort to strike the offending passage from the bill lost in a close vote (206-220) with a mere 16 Republicans defecting from an otherwise strictly party-lines vote. Both Bass and Guinta voted against the LaTourette/Costello Amendment.
The final roll call for the FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act was 223 in favor, 196 against, split almost exactly along party lines. On a conference call with bloggers in advance of the vote last week, Georgia Rep. Phil Gingrey asserted the necessity for the bill to pass decisively in the House in order to gain momentum heading into the Senate. “We don’t just want to squeak by, we want to win big, we want to win in a bipartisan way…to do so gives the House bill momentum heading across the Capitol,” said Gingrey.
While the final tally may not be exactly the resounding victory Gingrey and others hoped for, it should certainly be enough to reaffirm the message of the 2010 midterm elections that resulted in a Republican-controlled House in a very visible way. The bill’s next step is the Senate, which Gingrey acknowledges to be in Democratic hands, but he points out that many retiring Democrats are “quite conservative,” stating, “I am optimistic, this is not just posturing, this is a hugely important bill.”