AFL-CIO Director of Government Affairs Bill Samuel discussed how the United States Postal Service will operate as the election nears, where we are on COVID-19 relief legislation and more on the Sept. 24 episode of America’s Work Force Union Podcast.
Hypocrisy from Senate Republicans
Samuel started by pointing out the hypocrisy being put on display by Republican senators. He recalled their words in 2016 when they held a seat open for nearly a year, insisting the people should decide who fills the seat with the 2016 election. Samuel said these very senators have pulled a complete flip-flop on this issue.
He then discussed the payroll tax, how it is funded and who stands to lose the most from its repeal.
Samuel said President Trump is losing ground in key swing-states where the elderly population is high. Without the payroll tax, these voters know that social security will evaporate.
USPS working through the issues
After taking heat from every direction, Samuel said Postmaster General DeJoy sat down and talked with the various postal workers unions. After this meeting, there was a sense of relief in knowing that election mail will be given priority and that all ballots sent through the mail will be counted.
Samuel still advised listeners to vote as early as possible in order to ensure your vote is counted.
COVID-19 relief for workers
Samuel said thousands of airline workers will soon be furloughed, as the airline industry has been one of the biggest losers to the COVID-19 pandemic. There is not much in sight in terms of help for these workers or the millions of others who remain out of work.
He said airline unions and executives were recently in the capitol asking for a payroll support program. Congressional Democrats worry passing this could permanently shelve any aid to all of the other working class people who have been furloughed or let go from work.
Republicans are under a microscope on this issue according to Samuel. With some airlines having major hubs in states controlled by Republicans they are politically obligated to show they are doing something to help.