No Secret Ballot For GOP Endorsement Is Same As Union Card Check

The Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), commonly known as “Card Check,” is the misnamed legislation promoted by Organized Labor to stop the hemorrhaging within union ranks.  (From a high near 40 percent after World War II, union representation in the private sector has plummeted to just 7 percent today). It would make organizing a union infinitely easier by eliminating the current secret ballot vote used to determine whether employees wish to unionize.

Common sense tells us that whenever a secret ballot is not employed, many people will not vote their conscience.  Instead, they fall victim to intimidation and arm-twisting, and end up casting a ballot in favor of the person whom they are strongly encouraged —AKA “told” — to support.  The result is a rigged, Banana Republic election, anything but “Free Choice.”

The Republican Party, on both the state and national level, has vigorously opposed Card Check, not only because it is grossly unfair to companies, but much more important, because it would cavalierly discard that most fundamental American bedrock value: free and fair elections.  It is a right that has been held sacred in this nation, and has allowed the people to chart their own course and make their own decisions, free of outside influence and intimidation.

Given this, it seems extremely hypocritical that the Republican State Committee of Pennsylvania — while opposing Card Check — jettisons free and fair voting for its own members by refusing to allow secret ballot votes on important issues, such as Party endorsements.

And now, on the eve of the meeting in which the Committee will vote whether to endorse a candidate for the U.S. Senate (or not endorse at all), that issue has become a firestorm that is only growing in intensity.

The big question centers on whether the Party will endorse millionaire Steve Welch, a favorite among several GOP leaders, including Republican Governor Tom Corbett. The problem many have with Welch is that he voted for Barack Obama in the 2008 Democratic primary and supported former Congressman Joe Sestak, a stalwart liberal consistently to the Left of Obama. Welch claims he left the GOP out of frustration that it wasn’t conservative enough, leaving more than a few Republicans perplexed.

(In an email to PoliticsPA this week, Sestak wrote of his meeting with Welch: “He expressed support of me and what I stood for. He seemed nice and, separately, supportive of the Democratic Party and its efforts.”)

So would the Party really risk massive damage to itself by endorsing an Obama-voter, and make the sin mortal by doing so without a secret ballot?

They can’t be that dumb.

But this being Pennsylvania’s Republican Party, all bets are off.

Should they endorse Welch, it will be a double whammy, throwing the entire Party into a quagmire from which it would be difficult to escape.

State Committee would cement the perception that its endorsements are behind-the-scenes deals by inside powerbrokers hell-bent on executing individual agendas — the rank-and-file Party faithful be damned.  More damaging, it would play out — in full public view — exactly how ruthlessly efficient Card Check tactics are, making unions blush with envy.

How could Party leaders possibly explain with a straight face that the process was fair, and that no political pressure and intimidation took place — when Governor Corbett and certain State Committee leaders were openly pushing Welch?  Would it really be plausible to believe that the message “do it for the Party, and do it for your Governor — or else your political career stops here” wouldn’t be made loud and clear?

Even more telling, how could the Party explain Committee members’ change of heart in endorsing Welch after only one of five State Committee regional caucus straw polls voted for Welch as their candidate of choice? In other words, of the five regional “pre-election” votes that took place — voted on by the very same people who are now being asked to change their vote and endorse Welch — only one made Welch a winner. Significantly, Welch’s own Southeast Caucus refused to hold a straw poll, and Corbett was not even able to deliver his hometown Southwest Caucus for Welch.


This is by no means an indictment of Steve Welch. It has nothing to do with him, and everything to do with the Republican Party. Clearly, in this particular situation, the wisest course of action would be to ignore the Governor’s misguided endorsement and refuse to endorse any candidate.


In allowing grassroots Republicans across Pennsylvania to make their choice, free of Party endorsements, a civil war inside the GOP would be averted, and the best candidate — the people’s choice — would emerge to take on incumbent Bob Casey.  And if Welch wins a non-endorsement primary, his victory would not be tainted with the perception that he “bought” his way to the nomination.  Regardless of the outcome, no one can argue with the results if rank-and-file Republican voters make that decision.

Besides gaining immense credibility with many Republicans should it not endorse a candidate, State Committee could score a huge coup by then amending its bylaws to allow for that which is uniquely American: secret ballot elections.

Otherwise, it will become known as Republican State Committee, Local 666.


An accredited member of the media, Chris Freind is an independent columnist, television/radio commentator, and investigative reporter who operates his own news bureau,  His self-syndicated model has earned him the largest cumulative media voice in Pennsylvania. He can be reached at

, , , , , , , , , , ,
January 27, 2012 at 8:26 am Comments (0)

Mother Of Year: Denies Abusing Kid Before Slugging Cop (and getting Tased)


Crisis counselors said Lehigh County Children and Youth would have to get involved because of the child abuse allegations. Andino became angry and began yelling, “no one is taking my children,” and began cursing at the people at her home.

Officers told her to stop yelling and cursing, but she continued. She began resisting when police attempted to keep her from going into her home where counselors were conducting their investigation.

She eventually became combative and punched an officer in the head and shoulder. Another officer deployed his Taser and she was taken into custody.

Andino is charged with aggravated assault, simple assault, disorderly conduct and harassment. She was arraigned by District Judge Rod Beck and sent to Lehigh County Prison under $20,000 bail.

I’m sure the judicial system will let that slide.

August 22, 2011 at 4:55 pm Comment (1)

What they don’t want you to know about drilling in the Marcellus…

…it creates jobs.

Nearly 48,000 people have been hired in the last year by industries related to drilling in the Marcellus Shale, and 71 percent of those people were Pennsylvania residents. Nine thousand of them were hired in the first three months of 2011.

The average salary was higher than the statewide average.

And the rate of hiring is accelerating.

While there has been much talk of the economic impact of the Marcellus, most of it has been anecdotal, until the Department of Labor and Industry quietly published its most up-to-date hard numbers about two weeks ago.

Just for fun, before you click on the link, imagine what all the anti-Marcellus zealots are saying to refute this. Here’s what I came up with:

–All those jobs are just low-paying support jobs
–The money doesn’t make up for the environmental damage
–The numbers in the report were made up by the Corbett administration
All those jobs are going to out-of-staters Oops. Sorry. That one’s no good anymore.

OK. Now go to the comments section, which is apparently for Bolsheviks only, and see how many you got right. I was four for five the last time I checked. What you’ll see here is cognitive dissonance in action. The Marcellus-haters want the gas industry to fail. They want to see poor rural Pennsylvanians stay poor and rural. They want double-digit unemployment provided they’re not among the unemployed. The problem is that it isn’t happening. In response, the haters have begun moving the goalposts. The jobs may be here, but they’re not good enough. The gas companies may be paying taxes, but they’re not paying enough. We may not see environmental damage now, but trust me it’s there. Repeat ad nauseam.

Usually this is the part where I’d conclude by shaking my head and saying that they “just don’t understand”, but I think they do understand. I’ve been working in the environmental field for almost 15 years, and I’ve seen these groups in action over and over. There is a significant contingent of people who are anti-industry and anti-development. All their talk about taxes, jobs, and the environment is just a cover. The fact of the matter is that they don’t want to see productive enterprises thrive because it empowers the individual and disempowers them. If you have a good job and bright future, you don’t need a grievance group to do anything for you. The professionally aggrieved become irrelevant, and it drives them insane.

If you don’t believe me, ask yourself what exact conditions would have to exist before these groups would be satisfied. What would it take to shut them up? You could levy all the taxes and write all the regulations you want, but they’d still call for more. No amount of evidence will make them change their minds (see above). The only thing they’ll accept is an outright ban. They got a temporary one in New York State, and I predict that when that ban expires they’ll call for an extension saying that there hasn’t been “enough” study of the consequences of drilling. They want it shut down permanently, and nothing else will suffice.

At one time in history, Pennsylvania was the most productive place on earth. At that same time in history, Pennsylvania was great, and when I say great, I mean great-among-the-nations great. That is not a coincidence. We have the chance to be great again, and we owe it to ourselves to make sure that a bunch of power-hungry junior autocrats don’t stand in the way.

May 30, 2011 at 6:21 pm Comments (0)

Two conservative victories out east

How delightful.

Incumbent Lehigh County Commissioner Dean Browning lost handily in the Republican Primary on Tuesday, derailed by opponents’ successful efforts to saddle him with the blame for the county’s 16 percent property tax increase.

Three members of a slate of fiscally conservative candidates headed by Scott Ott, the GOP’s 2009 county executive candidate who nearly defeated heavily-favored Democrat Don Cunningham, were in the top three spots, according to unofficial results.


Ott, a conservative blogger and Tea Party favorite, put together a ticket of self-styled fiscal conservatives that included Mazzioti, Najarian and Scheller, who targeted Browning and his vote against rejecting a 16-percent-tax increase included in Cunningham’s 2011 budget.

Browning never actually voted for the tax increase itself, but he voted with five commissioners including Republican Percy Dougherty, against a Republican plan to trim it to 13 percent.

He cast the deciding vote against a second Republican bid to reject Cunningham’s budget outright. In theory, that would have forced Cunningham to enact deep cuts in county spending to balance the budget without a tax hike.

If you aren’t familiar with Scott Ott’s stuff, check him out at Scrappleface. It looks like the site could use some attention, but when you’re busy smoking a tax-hiking RINO, something’s gotta give.

On to round two
and Phillyburbs columnist Kate Fratti channeling Dionne Warwick and her psychic friends.

In Pennsbury, any seats not won outright by the anti-union faction in Tuesday’s primary will be won in November. They will take over the school board majority. That’s my prediction.

Pennsbury School District is the home of Simon Campbell, founder of Stop Teacher Strikes and a staunch opponent of the ever-growing behemoth that is the PSEA. All the seats on the school board are contested this fall with the pro-union candidates going up against the pro-education candidates.

Let’s hope Kate’s prediction comes true.

May 19, 2011 at 10:52 pm Comments (0)

This is why we need term limits

I wish I could say I was shocked, but really I’m not.

Pa. state Rep. Joe Brennan causes four-car accident, gets beer while awaiting police, officials say (h/t the inimitable Chris Lilik at

Pennsylvania state Rep. Joseph F. Brennan started a four-car, chain reaction crash last week in South Bethlehem, according to police.
Brennan stepped away from the crash site for a few minutes, police said, as he went into JP MacGrady’s bar. The crash occurred in front of the bar. One of the involved drivers, Jose Jimenez, of Allentown, told police that he saw Brennan go into the bar after the crash.

“If it was a Dunkin’ Donuts, I would have gone into Dunkin’ Donuts,” Brennan said of his choice to pop into JP MacGrady’s while waiting for police to arrive. “That’s where the accident happened, that’s where I pulled over.”


According to a police report, Brennan was found inside JP MacGrady’s, seated at the bar with a nearly full glass of beer before him. One officer alleged that Brennan claimed he was not involved in the wreck at all, but a second officer wrote that Brennan admitted he was at fault and understood he would be cited for careless driving.

So, he would have had a cruller in front of him if it were a Dunkin Donuts? That sounds legit.

Oh, and there’s one other thing…

Jimenez was also cited. He allegedly does not have a valid driver’s license.

That’s because he allegedly is an illegal immigrant. I’m just going to go with that.

Oh, by the way, I wonder which party Rep. Brennan belongs to? Hmm…it has to be here somewhere…. Oh, here it is in paragraph 10, right next to the pee-wee football scores!

Kravatz said none of the officers directly involved in the initial contact with Brennan knew he is a state representative, and that Brennan did not make mention of his elected office. Brennan, D-Lehigh/Northampton, was re-elected Nov. 2.

Hey, “Representative” Brennan. You’re an embarrassment to the Commonwealth. Resign.

November 19, 2010 at 8:42 pm Comment (1)

Forcing the Union Label in Allentown


what the Allentown City Council has introduced is a bill that would require anyone doing any construction work (even residential) valued at more than $40,000 to effectively use a union contractor. This means, if you are an Allentown resident and want to refurbish (for example) your kitchen and a bathroom, were this bill to pass, you would have to hire a union contractor. Forget price, forget quality and forget staying within a budget, since the unions have a virtual monopoly on apprentices, you would have no choice but to use a union contractor.

While the above is atrocious enough, Allentown is but one example of many as to how far the unions’ tentacles have taken over America’s communities.

If they can force you to buy health insurance, why can’t we be forced to buy union labor?

November 8, 2010 at 1:36 pm Comments (0)

Re: Bethlehem Coverup

Dale, it was discussed on Journolist, and it was decided that you’re a racist.

July 24, 2010 at 2:42 pm Comments (0)

Roundup: Economy/Porkulus edition

(1) By Jim Geraghty’s reckoning, the Allentown slice of the porkulus spent over $11 million on various projects with no identifiable jobs created. “Hey, I think I spotted the problem with the economy! All of this money is being thrown around, but nobody’s created any jobs with it!”

(2) The CEO of Emerson Electric Company is not liking what he’s seeing coming out of Washington (emphasis added):

The federal government is “doing everything in [its] manpower [and] capability to destroy U.S. manufacturing,” says David Farr, chairman and CEO of Emerson Electric Co., in a presentation at the Baird 2009 Industrial Conference in Chicago Ill., on Nov. 11. In comments reported by Bloomberg, Farr added that companies will continue adding jobs in China and India because they are “places where people want the products and where the governments welcome you to actually do something. I am not going to hire anybody in the United States. I’m moving. They are doing everything possible to destroy jobs.

Farr cites Cap-&-Trade, the expensive but non-targeted stimulus, the debt, the deficit, inflationary monetary policy, Obamacare, and general taxation and regulation.

Emerson is an S&P-500 component and has a market capitalization of over $30-bn.

(h/t to Eddie at Doubleplusundead)

(3) Maybe that’s why a majority of Americans want to cut their losses on the stimulus.  Calls for a second stimulus (or third, depending on your count) will fall on deaf ears.  (I seem to recall a certain Senate candidate who feels the same way.)

(4) Even youngsters are souring on Obama’s policies, though they have yet to bail out on Obama himself.  It’s a start.  (Translation for candidates: attack the policies, not Obama.)

(5) The return of the Misery Index does not bode well for Democrats, especially now that deflation has been transitioning into inflation.

December 7, 2009 at 10:01 am Comments (0)

Obama: F John Callaham

or is it an itch?

During President Obama’s speech in Allentown, PA today he scratched his head with his extended middle finger as he named the mayor of Bethlehem, PA. John Callahan supported Hillary Clinton during the Democratic primary.

December 4, 2009 at 11:16 pm Comments (0)

Human Piece of Crap Convicted

Drawing and quartering would be too nice for this piece of shit.

An eastern Pennsylvania jury took just an hour to convict an HIV-positive man of raping a 12-year-old girl.

Jurors in Northampton County on Wednesday convicted 25-year-old Shaun Austin, of Bath, on charges including rape of a child and statutory sexual assault. Prosecutors say Austin had unprotected sex with the then-12-year-old girl in late 2007 and 2008.

No word on the disposition of the victim.

December 2, 2009 at 7:43 pm Comments (0)

« Older Posts