Anyone needing a reminder that President Obama and his Administration are in the pockets of union bosses should stop what they’re doing and read this story now.
Here’s the gist: President Obama’s former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis was named in a recent lawsuit (full disclosure: she is not a defendant) claiming she was “provided thousands of dollars worth of free private jet travel without declaring the trips on the federal government required forms, paid for by the powerful International Union of Operating Engineers.”
And here’s the kicker: This all occurred “during the same period she was undergoing confirmation hearings to become part of President Barack Obama’s Cabinet.” But not just any cabinet position – Secretary of Labor.
Over the course of her career, Solis has been helped a lot by Big Labor:
“The IUOE and other unions heavily funded Solis’ campaign during her years in Congress and even back when she served as an elected [California] Assembly Member, State Senator, and as a Trustee to the Rio Hondo College Board … ‘In fact, during her time in Congress, between 2001 and 2009, she received more than $900,000 in contributions from unions,’ the suit states.”
So, let’s see: which side is she going to favor in policy debates: Big Labor bosses that are keeping the secret that they’ve illegally given her thousands of dollars in in-kind contributions and given her nearly a million dollars in hard money for campaigns? Or business owners trying to present their legitimate concerns about unionization and labor policy? The answer seems pretty obvious to us.
At the time of these… indiscretions… Solis was a sitting Member of the United States House of Representatives. As such, she was bound by the same disclosure rules as any other federal lawmaker. However, according “to the Office of the Clerk U.S. House of Representatives website, no Financial Disclosure Reports have been filed by Solis” – despite the fact that she reported 11 other trips.
And here’s an interesting point: Guess who’s bringing the lawsuit, and who the defendants are? If you guessed “members of the union” against “union bosses,” you are correct! A number of active union members in the local IUOE brought the suit against their “leaders” because of “years of illegal activity and embezzlement which harmed both Local 12 and its members.”
This is a perfect example of the Obama Administration’s coziness with Big Labor, and how they play fast and loose with both ethics and the rule of law. It is also a perfect example of Big Labor’s less-than-savory tactics – both providing needed services to important officials, and (we can assume) holding it over their heads for the rest of their lives, all the while lining their own pockets and not holding up their responsibilities to their own members.
And one last question: why on Earth does a union need a private jet, anyway!?