► At TheOlympian.com — State hospitals sue to block $260 million budget cut — The Washington State Hospital Association went to court Monday in an attempt to block $260 million in budget cuts that the group considers an illegal diversion of funds by the Legislature.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Judge keeps anti-tunnel Initiative 101 off Seattle ballot — An initiative that sought to prevent the state from using city streets or property to build the Highway 99 tunnel won’t go to Seattle voters. A King County Superior Court judge ruled I-101 wasn’t legal because it attempted to take away the state’s ability to build a state highway.
► In today’s NY Times — Wisconsin Democrat faces recall election today — The fate of one of the Wisconsin lawmakers who fled the state this year in an effort to block cuts to collective bargaining rights for public workers will be decided by voters on Tuesday. Dave Hansen, a Senate Democrat, is expected to retain his seat in the first of many recall votes facing legislators of both parties.
► In today’s NY Times — Signing away the right to govern (editorial) — A growing number of Republican interest groups are demanding that presidential candidates sign pledges shackling them to the corners of conservative ideology. Many candidates are going along, and each pledge they sign undermines the basic principle of democratic government built on compromise and negotiation.
► At Politico — The Republican Party is bad for business (Rep. Sander Levin column) — This, of course, runs contrary to the GOP’s carefully crafted image. But it’s hard to come to any other conclusion after reviewing the party’s actions in congressional economic debates. Time after time, Democrats stepped up to take the tough actions needed to prevent economic collapse while Republicans buried their heads in the sand. Three debates — TARP, Obama’s economic stimulus, and now the debt ceiling — have affected the U.S. business climate more than any other congressional matter of recent years. Each time, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and many other influential business groups have urged action. But on each occasion, Republicans have walked away from business.
► In today’s Washington Post — Business groups challenge rules on unions — Employer groups turned out in force Monday to challenge rules proposed by the NLRB that would streamline the process for holding union elections and make it easier for workers to organize. The rules would eliminate many of the opportunities for delaying elections that unions say give employers more time to threaten workers against organizing. Unions say the existing rules are tilted in favor of employers.
► In The Hill — NLRB hearings will reveal future of labor law (John Logan column) — Monday and Tuesday will see historic hearings at the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) on a proposed new rule for union certification elections. But the past few months has been a historic period for the NLRB for entirely different reasons – an extraordinary effort by the GOP leadership to “rule by intimidation” on labor policy.
CAREENING TOWARD THE CLIFF
► In today’s Washington Post — Debt ceiling crisis still eludes compromise — Republican lawmakers moved ahead Monday on a doomed plan to amend the U.S. Constitution to require a balanced federal budget, one day after President Obama met with the top two House GOP leaders in hopes of reaching a debt-limit agreement that could win approval from the hostile House.
► In today’s — Club for Growth to Republicans: Trigger a default, or else — Powerful conservative interest groups are demanding that Republicans vote against the only viable option currently on the table for avoiding a catastrophic debt default.
► In The Hill — Liberals trash Obama’s tax holiday proposal — Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) blasted Obama for his “stupid Social Security tax holiday,” arguing that money would be better used on more stimulative spending. He and other liberal lawmakers fear the extended tax holiday might make a permanent cut more likely, thus slashing Social Security’s primary funding stream and threatening future benefits.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Although the AFL-CIO fought to have Warren appointed, the labor federation has announced support of the nomination of Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The good news for fans of Elizabeth Warren, she may run for Massachusetts Republican Sen. Scott Brown’s seat. Run, Elizabeth, run!
► In today’s LA Times — Court revives law protecting L.A. grocery workers — Laws passed by California cities to protect labor when businesses change hands received a boost Monday from the California Supreme Court, which revived a Los Angeles ordinance aimed at protecting grocery workers.
► From AP — Study finds bias in most non-profit news sites — More than half of emerging nonprofit news sites produce content with a clear ideological bent, according to a study released Monday by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.
EDITOR’S NOTE — Wait. What?!
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 9 a.m. Make this electronic “clip service” your first stop each morning! These links are functional on the date of posting, but sometimes expire.