On most issues, we worry about two Democrats being awful and destroying progressive change for their own reasons–Joe Manchin and Krysten Sinema. But on labor issues, the problem is definitely not Manchin, although Sinema may still be a problem. It’s Mark Warner, who is pretty awful. Even if Democrats got rid of the filibuster, it looks like Warner would torpedo or at least seriously weaken the PRO Act.
“My fear is that parts of the PRO Act tries to fit all work into a classic 20th century employment status.”
Fact Check: The PRO Act lets independent contractors join a union. It doesn’t force them into any employment status. pic.twitter.com/dgSSKePaX7
— More Perfect Union (@MorePerfectUS) May 4, 2021
Rain or shine, there will be cake, and on Wednesday, huddling underneath umbrellas, the group of labor rights activists carried their latest to Sen. Mark R. Warner’s doorstep in Alexandria, Va.
It was the kind of white sheet cake typically found at children’s birthday parties — the seventh they have delivered to Warner’s home on consecutive Wednesdays, each made by a union-member baker and decorated with a slogan urging Warner to co-sponsor the Protecting the Right to Organize Act.“
Support the president,” the icing said, next to cutout pictures of Joe Biden. And then, partly quoting him: “Send me the PRO Act.”
They knocked on Warner’s door three times around 8:15 a.m. No answer.
So they set the cake on the doormat, then retreated back across the street with their signs — wondering what it would take to get the three-term Democratic senator to line up behind what they consider the most monumental piece of labor rights legislation in decades.
Evidently, they are delivering different cakes on most days. It won’t work, but might as well have some fun with it.
Mark Warner was an important figure in the transformation of Virginia politics. But Virginia is no longer a purple state. It is a quite blue state. Warner is turning into Feinstein here, a senator who on many issues is well to the right of his state. It’s part of a process. There are still enough Democrats like this in Virginia that the legislature has not repealed the state’s right to work law, which is the single most disappointing thing about Democratic control in the state, as well as sign that the left is right that a lot of Democrats are more comfortable with identity politics than class-based action. But we need senators in the Democratic caucus who are going to do the right thing. Increasingly, one of those senators is not Mark Warner.