Democrats to push public dollars to Big Labor

Everyday Higher Prices
Why ”high road” federal contracting standards are bad for business.

Bret Jacobson

Big Labor spends a lot of money on Democrats, and they want their money’s worth. So it’s no surprise that when union officials found out “card check”–their plan to overhaul the organizing process–wasn’t going to fly, labor bosses got out their gift receipts and named an exchange: the “high road” federal contracting standards. It’s just the latest effort to increase costs on taxpayer projects in the name of pushing more money to labor unions.

Reports this week of the new proposal are raising eyebrows. Though details are sketchy, here’s the general idea: The Obama administration is attempting to alter the scoring system currently used to evaluate government contractors and suppliers.

The new system would provide additional points for so-called “high road” employers who pay wages and benefits above minimum standards. (Note that the new requirement is not about providing quality above minimal standards; employers simply have to pay more.) Thus, competition in bidding becomes a tangled race to see who can charge the most to cover higher labor costs.

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