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Sent to Inslee’s office, who’s OK with slavery, Gimme One Reason…

Friday, May 29, 2015




guv-office-edit► From AP — Gov. Inslee orders state budget negotiations in his office — Gov. Jay Inslee has ordered a second special legislative session to convene Friday and told lawmakers working on the state’s more than $38 billion two-year operating budget he wants them to move their negotiations to his office, starting Monday morning.

ALSO at The Stand — Senate shows ‘open contempt’ for state workers as shutdown looms

► In today’s Seattle Times — Special session ends with deep divide, no budget deal — Beginning Friday, the state will start sending out notices to state employee unions and contractors warning of temporary layoffs or other effects of a shutdown.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Meanwhile in Oregon…

► In today’s Oregonian — Oregon lawmakers approve bills to help close wage gap, fight wage theft — Two bills touted as strengthening worker protections around retaliation and wage claims are headed to Gov. Kate Brown’s desk following their legislative approval Thursday.

► In today’s Oregonian — Compromise on Oregon paid sick leave bill clears path for Senate action — If approved, Oregon would become the fourth state to require employers to provide workers with paid time off to care for themselves or an ailing family member.




col-madore-david► In today’s Columbian — Conjuring up controversy (editorial) — Clark County Councilor David Madore’s inability to recognize that others are attempting to leave the Columbia River Crossing in the past is maddening, and his penchant for needlessly picking political battles is damaging. Madore’s myopic, self-indulgent view of governance repeatedly has led him to use wedge issues to divide residents while at the same time obliterating his credibility. As one of the first lessons of living in a civilized society suggests, it is important to choose your battles — a lesson that Madore routinely ignores in his work as a county councilor.

EDITOR’S NOTE — It was Madore who sought a proposition promoting so-called “right-to-work” restrictions in county employee contracts, which would have been illegal and set the county up for a costly legal battle. His idea failed to win support from his fellow councilors, but did prompt a public outcry against Madore.

► In today’s Olympian — Nearly 200 Shelton mill workers seek aid, information at resource fair — The resource fair was created to help workers and others affected by three Shelton-area mill closures.

► From AP — Tacoma $15 minimum wage group needs hundreds more signatures — A group looking to boost Tacoma’s minimum wage to $15 an hour needs less than 500 more signatures to get the initiative on the November ballot.

► In today’s News Tribune — Tacoma mayor warns minimum wage task force about public information laws — Since Tacoma’s minimum wage task force was created by a resolution of the city council, it’s acting on their behalf and therefore must conduct its work in public.




obama-sad► From Huffington Post — Is the TPP OK with slavery? Really? (by Mike Lux) — So the fast track plan to pass the Trans-Pacific Partnership has run into a new wrinkle after an amendment passed in the Senate debate: slavery. Yes, really, slavery: the Senate voted for an amendment that would make it more difficult for countries that engage in slavery to be in the TPP, and the Obama administration objected. This is bizarre stuff, folks, but welcome to the world of international trade deals.

ALSO at The Stand: Reichert blasted for Fast Track Medicare cuts

Larsen backs Fast Track, but will he fight slavery, Medicare cuts?

► From Politico — The dozen Dems who’ll decide Obama’s trade deal — The Senate last week passed Fast Track on a 62-37 vote. But the House is another story: Only 17 Democrats are on record in support, and several dozen Republicans have come out against it, too. Proponents would lose if a vote were taken today. But there are enough undecided lawmakers to make the expected mid-June vote a cliffhanger.

► In the NY Times — On trade, unions open aggressive ad campaign against Democrats — With the fight over Mr. Obama’s trade push shifting to the House, organized labor groups are getting personal with their attacks on the Democrats whose support the president needs to win.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Here is an ad that will soon be running in Rep. Suzan DelBene’s district, as it will in the districts of Reps. Derek Kilmer, Rick Larsen, Denny Heck, and other members of Congress across the country.




unions-wages-chart► From Huffington Post — 10 Ways to Make the Economy Work for the Many, Not the Few: #7, Strengthen Unions and Preempt State ‘Right-to-Work’ Laws (by Robert Reich) — One big reason America was far more equal in the 1950s and 1960s than now is unions were stronger then. That gave workers bargaining power to get a fair share of the economy’s gains — and unions helped improve wages and working conditions for everyone. But as union membership has weakened — from more than a third of all private-sector workers belonging unions in the 1950s to fewer than 7 percent today — the bargaining power of average workers has all but disappeared. In fact, the decline of the American middle class mirrors almost exactly the decline of American labor union membership.

► In the Boston Herald — New report shows over 40% of US workers are ‘contingent’ employees — The number of “contingent” U.S. employees, or workers who don’t have traditionally secure jobs, is growing, according to a new report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Workers considered contingent include agency temps, on-call workers, independent contractors, self-employed workers, and standard part-time employees.




► A couple weeks ago, The Entire Staff of the Stand celebrated the late, great B.B. King, whose influence on popular music will live on forever. Today, we offer a case in point: Tracy Chapman performing some classic 12-bar blues that we’re sure made the King of the Blues proud. Enjoy!


The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.

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