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Working families deserve a leader who will focus on “we, the people,” not just on the person they see in the mirror. Only Vice President Joe Biden can be that president. I’ve known Joe for 40 years. He loves his family, loves working people and loves our country. His “Made in America” plan will revitalize America's manufacturing in a way Trump never could. Biden doesn’t only have the best plan to beat the virus and help workers recover financially—he is the only candidate for president with a plan at all. And with a Biden administration, we’ll finally pass the PRO Act, allowing workers to join a union freely and fairly.
Fifty-five years ago, in a speech to the convention of the Illinois AFL-CIO, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. laid out with characteristic moral clarity the essential role of unions in American life. “The labor movement,” he explained, “was the principal force that transformed misery and despair into hope and progress … [When] the wave of union organization crested over the nation, it carried to secure shores not only itself but the whole society. Civilization began to grow in the economic life of man, and a decent life with a sense of security and dignity became a reality rather than a distant dream.”

This Labor Day, America’s working families are facing unprecedented challenges.

Brothers and sisters,

This will be a short update as the session is coming to a close and many of those items we have been watching have either passed through or died.

As I talked about last week, SB-2135 is a bill to study the ballot initiative system with the stated purpose of making it better. Unfortunately for several in the legislature, making it better means increasing their own power to control laws by stripping away yours. North Dakota’s citizen-led, ballot-initiative system is the best in the nation and don’t let the legislature tell you differently.

HB-1193 was defeated in the North Dakota Senate on a vote of 44 to 1!

Brothers and sisters,

We just passed legislative week one million and three or thereabouts, and we’re still here. Though this session seems like it has been going for a while, the end is in sight because Monday will be the 55th day of the session out of a maximum of 80. Though there are serious budget fights still going on and more to come, there is also a light at the end of the tunnel… We just hoping it’s not an oncoming train.

Sisters and Brothers,

Believe it or not, week eleven of the 65th Legislative session just passed. The days go by slow, but the weeks fly right past. In fact, this week is the deadline for referrals of bills into appropriations. The time for testimony will be soon over and the slow grinding arguments over how to pay for what the legislature has passed will be upon us.

 Sisters and Brothers,

Things slowed down this week. Many Labor bills that will affect us have already either been defeated or pushed through, and the legislature is now getting down to the basic fight over money and budget. The North Dakota budget was the big news at the Capital this week and is looking grimmer with each succeeding forecast. Our public employees are facing some serious threats as these updated numbers are used to navigate tough budget decisions. North Dakota United has some work to do out in the coming weeks.

Sisters and Brothers,

As the crossover recess was Monday and Tuesday, this was a short but somewhat eventful week.  Never a dull day at the capital! Terrifying! Disheartening! Soul sucking! Yes! But not dull. Like a train wreck in progress, the apocalypse that is 2017 North Dakota politics is a clothes-on-fire/no-water-in-sight kind of exciting.

Let’s start with on last week’s highlights.

Sisters and Brothers,

This last week was a busy week being both crossover week and the time of the AFL-CIO legislative conference.  Overall it was an excellent week.

Sisters and Brothers,

Seven weeks into the session and we are still ticking. Things are slowing down as we approach the crossover, but it is not over by any means.  As much as we may want it to be…