Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Why Is Peter Roskam Kissing Union Ass?

Peter Roskam seems confused. He represents the 6th Congressional District in Illinois. He calls himself a Republican and he's running for re-election. Did he think it would be a wise move to support currently proposed legislation for a bailout of troubled union pension funds? In theory, the bill could add $165 billion to the of American taxpayers' already heavy burden. The bill is being introduced by Senator Bob Casey, (D-Pa.), who says it will save jobs and help people, and Roskam supports it. The bill in question will essentially let multi-employer union pension plans, like the Teamster's plan that is currently causing UPS so much trouble, segregate out the workers of defunct companies and get the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corp to pony up for their benefits. Media Matters says that the bailout won't cost $165 billion, and they're right; that's the total liabilities of the plan. Theoretically, it could cost $165 billion if every single employer went bankrupt, but that's not a very likely scenario. More at The Atlantic... NetRightDaily reports that "Americans for Limited Government (ALG) has sent a letter to 9 House Republicans urging that they withdraw their support from legislation providing a taxpayer bail-out of labor union run pension funds. Among the union pension funds in critical danger are those run by the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA), the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) and more than a hundred other union-run funds." Roskam is one of the nine Congressmen to get that letter. Read more at NetRightDaily.com Roskam has a reputation as a good conservative, so his support of Casey's union bailout bill seems bizarre. Roskam has a good "general favorability towards Republicans" according to National Journal Online's 2009 Vote Ratings with score of 76.0. That's "good," but it's far from perfect. (Compare it to Mark Kirk's 60.7 rating.) (Hat tip to TeaPartyElections.)