Discussion: Obama Order Forces Workers Back To Philadelphia Rail After Strike

Discussion for article #223936

what is the cause of this strike? is this a problem corbett csused and now wants the president to bail him out+

Lose-Lose situation for Obama: Along with the people who hate him for ordering people to do stuff (“IT’S AN IMPERIAL PRESIDENCY! IMPEEEEEEEECH!”), he’ll have organized labor pissed at him for “taking away our right to strike!”

And he did it anyway, which means it was probably the right thing to do – something else the “IMPERIAL PRESIDENCY” zombies hate about him.

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Right now Corbett is buried so deep, archaeologists will declare his bones proof there was a Missing Link. I think it’s just that Philly will be an absolute mess if there’s no mass transit come Monday morning. Mind you, Corbett COULD have caused the problem; he seems to be at the heart of everything else that’s wrong with PA, up to and including the Joe Paterno scandal.

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Reagan, at Air Traffic Control.

The Air Traffic Controllers strike affected the entire country, but this strike is only local to Philly.

On August 3, 1981 nearly 13,000 of the 17,500 members of the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO) walked off the job, hoping to disrupt the nation’s transportation system to the extent that the federal government would accede to its demands for higher wages, a shorter work week, and better retirement benefits. At a press conference in the White House Rose Garden that same day, President Reagan responded with a stern ultimatum: The strikers were to return to work within 48 hours or face termination.


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Well… isn’t this something local and not at a Federal level? How is Obama involved in this?

You need to learn from history instead of posting this drivel. this is hardly the first time a POTUS has intervened to end a union strike.

Let’s think real real hard here…Air Controllers union…Ronnie. What was his last name, I seem to have forgotten…


Air Traffic controllers = Federal workers
Philly Rail strikers = Local Philly workers

How Obama got involved in this? Is the Philly Rail under Federal oversight and if so, why?

Your comprehensive readings skills are no match a trained Bonobo’s.

Obama granted Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett’s request to create a presidential emergency board to mediate the dispute between the Southeast Pennsylvania Transportation Authority and its engineers and electricians unions.


Because Republicans cannot govern, and rely on Democrats to bail them out, time after time after time after time after time after time…THAT’S WHY!

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Think Taft-Hartley. Eisenhower invoked that a number of times when I was a kid; steel workers, auto workers, seems like most strikes had that “cooling off period” invoked. Kennedy probably invoked it as well, but I can’t remember specific instances. Dubya invoked it in a lockout.

The act also prohibited government workers’ strikes, which is how Reagan got away with the ATC firings, but it was often used to force private companies’ labor back to work.


So? See my reply to Sooner.


I’m no fan of Corbett (and a resident of Philadelphia, living across the street from a regional rail station), but these comments are pretty much off base. SEPTA is a regional agency with appointees from the suburban counties, Philadelphia and the state. The board is dominated by the suburban counties, which lean Republican (less so than it used to be). SEPTA has been messing with the rail unions for the last 5 years (while they’ve worked without a contract). SEPTA has contracts with its other divisions and wanted to impose the same provisions, especially pension changes. The union didn’t buy in, and SEPTA in turn refused to go to arbitration.

The union had finally had it and called a strike, not unexpected by any one who was paying attention. But, despite the comments (and some rather simplistic reporting from some news sources), the union wanted this result. Folks who were paying attention expected this to happen, though I’m kind of surprised it happened so quickly. The bottom line is this brings in outside arbitrators, appointed by the president, who will come back with a settlement which the union hopes will 1) be in their favor and 2) that SEPTA will be forced to accept.

Corbett’s position, as governor, was to make the request. Did he cause the problem? Not really since the union has been without a contract longer than Corbett has been in office. Is Obama the bad guy here - certainly not. He is involved because this falls under the executive power/responsibility under the Railway Labor Act. Note, too, that this is interstate (while SEPTA is a regional based transit system that has PA representatives on the board, trains serve Trenton (2 lines) and Delaware). It’s really overreach in this case to characterize Corbett as “begging” Democrats to bail anyone out, it’s more like the governor being the legal authority to ask for federal assistance when that’s what the law calls for - say, like after a natural disaster.

This is NOT like the air traffic controllers. It is NOT a lose-lose situation, it was the right (and legal) thing to do - for Corbett and Obama. The workers hope it will fix this mess, and it’s what is best for the region. And well within the law and presidential powers. And, yes, it will keep the region from being a commuter mess on Monday.

Here’s the announcement from the White House: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/06/14/president-obama-announces-presidential-emergency-board-names-members

Let’s keep it honest and fact based - there are enough facts to convince voters in PA that Corbett needs to be retired in November, and facts that Obama is doing a good job in a very negative political climate. Leave the speculation to the winger sites. Thanks.

Thank you for the context.