Serial No. 105-102


Printed for the use of the Committee on Education

and the Workforce


Statement of the honorable harris Fawell, chairman, subcommittee on employer-employee relations, committee on education and the workforce, u.s. house of representatives *

Statement of the honorable Donald payne, ranking member, subcommittee on employer-employee relations, committee on education and the workforce, u.s. house of representatives *













"Impediments To Union Democracy"


Monday, May 4, 1998



The subcommittee met, pursuant to call, at 1:30 p.m., in Room 2175, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Harris Fawell [chairman of the subcommittee] presiding.

Present: Representatives Fawell, Ballenger, and Payne.

Staff Present: Mark Rodgers, Workplace Policy Coordinator; Peter Gunas, Professional Staff Member; Lauren Fuller, Chief Investigator; Jay Diskey, Communications Director; Bill McCarthy, Press Secretary; Gary Visscher, Workplace Policy Counsel; Rob Green, Professional Staff Member; Marjorie Wasson, Staff Assistant; Brian Kennedy, Labor Counsel/Coordinator; Peter Rutledge, Senior Legislative Associate/Labor; Pat Crawford, Legislative Associate/Labor; and Shannon McNulty, Staff Assistant/Labor.


Statement of the honorable harris Fawell, chairman, subcommittee on employer-employee relations, committee on education and the workforce, u.s. house of representatives

Chairman Fawell. Good afternoon. The subcommittee will come to order.

I would like to welcome everyone and offer a special thank you to each of our witnesses for being here and to the Members who have returned on this nonlegislative day for this important hearing.

Today begins the first of what I intend to be a series of hearings looking at impediments to union democracy. Democracy is a big word. We all know from social studies class that a democracy is a government by the people exercised either directly or through elected representatives. The term, though, embodies a whole lot more: our values, our respect for one another, the beliefs we seek to realize in the laws we pass. And one of the definitions in the American Heritage Dictionary for democracy is, and I quote, "the principles of social equality and respect for the individual within a community".

Aristotle wrote that democracy arises out of the notion that those who are equal in any respect are equal in all respects. Whatever words each of us would choose to describe our form of government, we all recognize that our democracy is a precious system that many have sacrificed their lives to preserve.

What do I mean, then, by the term union democracy. I mean the right of an elected officer of a local union to attend union executive board meetings and be able to ask questions about union expenditures without being physically beaten or harassed.

I mean the right of a local union to elect officers of its own choosing to represent it within its union structure.

I mean the right of a local union to run its own affairs consistent with its constitution and bylaws without being taken over and arbitrarily silenced by an illegitimate trusteeship imposed by the international union.

I mean the right of an individual union member to run for office, to vote at meetings, to express any arguments or opinions that they may have and to voice views upon union candidates and union business without being harassed and intimidated or threatened.

In short, by union democracy I mean all of the rights granted to the rank and file by the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959, the LMRDA, the Landrum-Griffin Act, an act Congress passed as an outgrowth of the Senate's McClellan committee hearings in the late 1950s. The LMRDA was drafted to ensure that individual union members have enough information about and say in their union affairs that they can competently regulate themselves. Through democratic participation and public disclosure to members of the union's financial matters, drafters of this law have sought to ensure that union officials would be accountable to their members and thereby protect individual members from corrupt or otherwise unwanted or undemocratic leadership.

This hearing and the hearings to follow have been prompted by the subcommittee becoming aware of numerous instances in which union members have suffered violence and otherwise may have had their rights abused and violated.

My intent is to look into these events from both a local and national union perspective, to listen to the rank and file union leadership, Federal agencies of jurisdiction, academics and other experts and determine whether changes are needed in the law or whether the existing laws need to be better enforced or maybe both. It is clear that this is a difficult area in which to legislate but it is just as clear that we have problems across the country with unions that need to be addressed.

Last week the Congressional Research Service ran a Lexis search at the subcommittee's request and came up with 2400 news articles in the past year alone addressing just union assault, intimidation, election violations, without even looking at pension fund, trusteeship or the other myriad issues covered by the LMRDA.

Within our two party system each party in effect serves as a check and balance upon the other. Within organized labor, however, legislating an effective democracy within a one party system or what has been referred to as a bit of an oligarchy made up of members and their leaders is not easy and needs to be undertaken with care.

What is easy, though, is to realize that the labor movement derives its strength from its democracy and that this democracy within unions exists only as union members exercise their rights to participate in union life, to make their voices heard in union decisions, to serve as officers and support candidates of their choice.

Congress has an opportunity through this series of hearings to in a bipartisan manner look at a vital piece of Federal legislation passed nearly four decades ago and examine whether we need to dust off the LMRDA and make some improvements to protect union members' democratic rights.

In addition to a number of local union members and officers who have taken time to share their stories with us, the subcommittee is honored to have this afternoon as a joint majority-minority witness, which is not something that we do too often here, Professor Clyde Summers of the University of Pennsylvania law school. It was Professor Summers who at Senator John F. Kennedy's request back in 1957 served on the committee of experts to draft a bill of rights for the union members which ultimately became title I of the Landrum-Griffin Act.

As Professor Summers has written, the LMRDA was passed because it expressed the basic democratic values of our society. I just was talking to Professor Summers about this, the unique combination apparently of those who were not highly motivated to help unions and those who were idealists like Professor Summers and others combined together, I gather, to still pass that landmark legislation even though I gather most of labor organization leadership was opposed to the idea.

I will be asking Professor Summers how that really came about, how they had, how that unique circumstance occurred and whether lightening might strike again. I think it is very unique how that law did become law. Professor Summers will explain the fundamental premises and purposes of the LMRDA, explain its roots, its provisions and generally provide the subcommittee with an overview of the Federal law which governs the relationship between labor leaders and their rank and file membership.

Given the importance of Professor Summers' testimony and his status as a joint witness, he will be given 15 minutes for his oral statement. Following Professor Summers' testimony we will hear from William Rugh. Mr. Rugh is a 26-year member of Carpenters Local 845, which is part of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America's Philadelphia Regional Council. He is chairman of the group Philadelphia Carpenters for Democracy, and he will be testifying about what his organization has characterized as the hostile takeover of his local by the international union.

Testifying next will be Michael Bearse who is general counsel for the Laborers' International Union of North America. Mr. Bearse is based here in Washington, D.C. Next will be Ernest "Skip" Patterson, who has been a member of the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers since 1990. In 1996, Mr. Patterson was elected President of the 3000-member National Transient Lodge, the largest local lodge of boilermakers in the United States. His testimony will address the circumstances which have left the 3000 members he represents effectively without a local union voice. I would like to get more of how that can come about.

Following Mr. Patterson will be Steven Manos who is the vice president of Hartford Connecticut's Laborers Local 230, part of the Laborers' International Union of North America, also known as LIUNA. Mr. Manos has been a member of that union since 1965 and will be testifying about the price he has paid for running for elected office in his local union. And there is a price for running for office, I can say that.

Our final witness will be Thomas Donnelly, who is a rank and file member of the Pile Drivers Local Union 34 Northern California and a member of Pile Driver Pride, a rank and file committee of Local 34 members formed in response to a trusteeship and what they deem certainly to be a hostile takeover by the United Brotherhood of Carpenters.

At this time I would like to ask the distinguished ranking member, Mr. Don Payne from New Jersey, if he has an opening statement.


[The statement of Mr. Fawell follows:]




Mr. Payne. Thank you Mr. Chairman.


Statement of the honorable Donald payne, ranking member, subcommittee on employer-employee relations, committee on education and the workforce, u.s. house of representatives

I, too, certainly have to comment on the unusual time of this hearing on a nonlegislative day, and I want to apologize to the groups back home and the students I intended to talk to today as I do when I am home and meeting with people from the district. If they are watching, I apologize for having to cancel those meetings because of the importance of this hearing.

As was indicated, it is rather unusual to call a hearing on Monday, but I am glad that I was able to get down here because what happens to working people who are attempting to better their quality of life through union representation is very important. I also want to thank today's witnesses for taking time and effort to appear before us this afternoon.

Our first witness, Professor Summers, has succinctly and eloquently summed up the importance of the issues the subcommittee is considering today. Workers deserve and are entitled to a voice in the decisions affecting their terms and conditions of employment, as they are in the decisions affecting public policy.

Necessarily, the only means by which most workers are able to effectuate that voice is through collective bargaining. However, if the process by which the bargaining agent is chosen is not democratic or if the bargaining agent cannot be held accountable to those whom they represent, then the purpose for which collective bargaining exists cannot be achieved.

In the words of Professor Summers, "Workers gain no voice in the decisions of their working life if they have no voice in the decisions of the unions which represent them". The issue, then, of promoting and preserving democracy within unions is one that is basic to the whole concept of collective bargaining.

In my view, no one who legitimately claims to support and promote the practices and procedures of collective bargaining can be opposed to the principle of union democracy. However, if the importance of maintaining democratic procedures is one on which we can all agree, the issue of how best to promote democracy, whether in a union or in a Nation, does not lend itself as readily to easy answers.

If unions are to fulfill their purpose of providing workers a voice in the determination of their working conditions, they must be democratic. But they also must be able to effectively implement the policies and goals that their members have democratically chosen them to pursue.

For example, while many may contend that democracy is better promoted by promoting local autonomy over centralized authority, it is worth remembering that the first government of the United States, and we have heard some of this referred to by the chairman, operating under the Articles of Confederation failed because it lacked the central authority to be able to effectively implement the democratic will.

The principle of balancing the rights of minorities must be balanced against the rights of the majority to be able to effectively exercise their will. The minority should be heard, but the majority decision is what prevails if you are going to move any concept forward.

There is a further point that I want to make at the start of this hearing. As long as we are discussing democracy, it behooves this subcommittee to also consider democratic procedures or, more accurately, the lack of democratic procedures governing the process by which unions are selected.

The procedures by which union representation elections are contested are as grossly unfair as any ever concocted. Imagine an election campaign where only one side has access to the electorate at a single site where the electorate congregates. Imagine an election campaign in which one side can require the electorate as a condition of employment to listen to their point of view and may pay the electorate for doing so while the other side is wholly dependent on voluntary communications and jeopardizes the election results by so much as giving away a shirt.

Perhaps the grossest insult in this whole process is that employers are provided these patently unfair advantages in a manner that concerns who will represent the workers for the purpose of talking to the employer. Not only is the employer not a party in interest with regard to the issues under consideration, but the employer has an obvious and direct conflict of interest.

If we subscribe to the principle that workers should have a voice in the determination of their working conditions, then the issue of how democratic the processes are by which a union is selected is every bit as important as the issue of how democratic the union is. You can't have one really without the other. By law, unions must be democratic institutions. Whether that law is effectively enforced and how that law can be improved are important and legitimate subjects.

However, the law that governs the way unions are selected is unambiguously undemocratic. That is, this committee would focus and I hope that we will focus on how to improve democracy within unions, but it is going to be difficult without addressing the obvious lack of democracy in the way unions are chosen. There is strong evidence that the committee majority is less than fully committed to promoting and encouraging the practices and procedures of collective bargaining. If I may quote once more from Professor Summers, "Those who are not fully committed to promoting and encouraging the practices and procedures of collective bargaining have no standing to discuss much less demand union democracy".

Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the opportunity to address this very important issue today. I look forward to a very thorough discussion about how to achieve the appropriate balance between the will of the many and the needs of the few.

Thank you very much.




Chairman Fawell. I thank the gentleman from New Jersey.

Witnesses appearing before this committee and its subcommittees are asked to take an oath and promise to tell the truth. Witnesses should be aware that under Title 18 Section 1621 of the United States Code, lying to Congress while under oath may be prosecuted under the law. In light of this, I would ask all of the witnesses in concert to please rise and to raise your right hand.

[Witnesses sworn.]


Chairman Fawell. Please be seated.

The usual customary manner in which we function is to allow five minutes per witness to basically summarize their views. There is a little, there are three lights there. When the red light, the yellow light indicates caution and the red light comes on, that signifies the end of the 5 minute period. We don't just stop you arbitrarily but we give that to you so you can see generally where you are in your comments.

The exception today is Professor Summers who has a long and distinguished history in the area of labor law. We are very glad that you have been able to join us, Professor. It truly is, I hope this meeting will be classified as a bipartisan one. Surely the initial witness is.

We join together in bipartisanly welcoming you and affording you an extra opportunity to be able to give us some background, because you lived through on the front lines of the Landrum-Griffin Act when it was created, which apparently had people who were not too interested in labor unions joining together with the ideal lists and somehow passing that legislation, which has been very important. We are now looking at the question of, well, can it be improved, what is the status, what can we do to be of help.

Professor Summers, if you would at this time commence, we would appreciate it.





Professor Summers. I have a little difficulty knowing where to start because most of what I have to say has already been summarized twice.


Chairman Fawell. You can say it better than it has been said so far.


Professor Summers. I think there are basic principles well worth repeating.

My purpose is limited simply to try to explain the premises and the purposes of Landrum-Griffin and not go into particular details. I think that understanding those premises is fundamental to any sensible approach to it, to potential changes in the statute.

First, we need to start with the roots of the statute and those go back to 1935 with the passage of the Wagner Act. The Wagner Act was devoted to the principle, the announced policy to encourage the practices and procedures of collective bargaining.

One of the fundamental purposes of that statute was that through collective bargaining employees would have a voice in the decisions of their working life. And this principle echoed an historic policy of providing that democracy in industry should match democracy in politics.

And Senator Wagner, in explaining the undergirding philosophy of the statute, said, we must have democracy in industry as well as in government. Democracy in industry means fair participation by those who work in the decisions vitally affecting their lives and livelihood. Workers in our great mass production industries can enjoy this participation only if allowed to organize and bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing.

So the fundamental roots of the Landrum-Griffin Act were really in the Wagner Act's devotion to the purpose of encouraging the purposes and practices of collective bargaining. However, collective bargaining can serve these purposes only if the unions are themselves democratic.

As already has been quoted, workers gain no voice in the decisions of his working life if they have no voice in the decisions of the union which represents them. This is a basic premise of the Landrum-Griffin Act. The ultimate goals of collective bargaining can be achieved only if union members are guaranteed their democratic rights within the union.

The focus of the Landrum-Griffin Act was, therefore, to protect the democratic rights of union members and the democratic processes in union decision making. Senator McClellan, whose two year investigation stirred the demand for legislation in introducing his bill of rights for union members as an amendment to the committee proposal, stated improper practices on the part of some labor organizations can be prevented only by laws prescribing minimum standards of democratic process and conduct for the administration of union affairs.

If this bill is enacted into law, he said, it would bring to the conduct of union affairs and union members the reality of some of the freedoms from oppression we enjoy as citizens by virtue of the Constitution.

We should give union members their inherent constitutional rights. We should make those rights apply to union members as well as other affairs of life. We should protect union members in these rights.

One of the premises of the statute was that though the statute would protect democratic rights, the purpose was to limit government intervention in internal union affairs. In this there is a kind of appearance of the statute looking both ways, but it is only an appearance. And that is there was a desire to let unions be self-governing, to let unions decide their own policies, to elect their own officers, decide what they want to do. However, that could be allowed only if those decisions by the unions were made democratically.

So, that, to achieve the minimum intervention of government in union decisions, it was to make sure that the decisions were made through a democratic process. So the focus was on protecting the unions' democratic process.

The statute, I want to say a little bit about, just briefly sketch what the statute in substantive terms provides.

The statute protects and enhances the democratic process by protecting and guaranteeing five basic rights or five basic areas. First, the right to know. Members can have an effective voice in the decisions of their union only if they know what their officers are doing. Therefore, title I, for example, requires unions to make available to members copies of collective agreements covering them. Title II requires unions to file reports with the Secretary of Labor, but, more relevant, it requires the union to make those reports available to members.

But beyond that, it goes critically much further, and that is it allows union members to get a court order to examine the underlying material on which those reports are based and, therefore, determine whether these reports, particularly financial reports, accurately reflect and fully reflect what the union is in fact doing.

The second basic right is the right to free speech and assembly. There can be no democratic process unless the union members feel a freedom to criticize the policies of the union, to express their views concerning union decision making and to criticize the conduct of union officers.

Therefore, in title I of the Bill of Rights, there is this protection of freedom of speech and assembly. And it is a broad right which prohibits both the right of the union members to criticize the union, both inside and outside the union, to form opposition groups and opposition caucuses, the right to urge members not to pay dues which are believed to be contrary to the Constitution or law, the right to oppose strikes, and the right to oppose and to criticize union officers, even to the point of making statements which constitute, or may constitute, defamation.

So the statute does give exceedingly wide protection, maybe not as much as might be, but wide protection in the freedom of speech.

Third, the statute protects or guarantees the right to participate in union decisions. Section 101, the first item of the Bill of Rights, states that members have an equal right to participate in the decisions of their union. But the courts have interpreted this as more than equal rights.

It is not enough for the union leaders to deprive all members equally of their right to participate. What the courts have said is that equal rights require the right to have effective participation, to have an effective voice, and, therefore, if the union leaders present referendum in which the issues are misrepresented, if they misinform the members of what is involved, if they try to silence those who would oppose particular votes, if they try to shout down union members at union meetings or prevent them from speaking, all of these are violations of the right to participate guaranteed by this section, and the courts have put limits on the unions engaging in such activities.

Fourth, there is the right to fair elections. The ultimate right, of course, in providing union democracy is to enable the members to have an effective voice in the election of their union officers, and so title IV provides quite comprehensive regulation of the election process. So in the counting of the ballots, that regulation covers from the process of the nominating of officers, campaigning for union officers, the use of union funds in campaigning and the right to distribute literature to members, and access to membership lists, so that there is rather significant protection of the whole election process.

The fifth protection guarantee is the right of, shall we say, the obligation of union officers to maintain a fiduciary obligation to their members, so that the union officers are not only required to not steal union money or to avoid conflicts of interest, but to spend money and carry out other policies in accord with the decisions of their members. So we have these basic rights which are given substantial guarantee by this statute.

I do not mean to say that the statute is perfect. There are gaps. There is a lack at certain points of giving adequate guarantee to these rights. But I think what should be recognized is that the statute looks toward the protection of these rights as essential rights for maintaining a democratic process, and if there are changes in the statute, then it seems to me they ought to be in the direction of giving increased protection to these basic rights.

There is not time here for me to make specific recommendations as to the amending of the statute, and I will not attempt to do so, except to say that there are areas that need to be strengthened so that the basic democratic processes are protected. But I would take time to point out a particular element in this, in providing these guarantees.

There is a tendency to think in terms of the union political processes as analogous to our general political processes and to protect rights in that same framework. But there is a difference, and that is that the union political process is essentially a political process with a single organized party. The administration of the union is a dominant political party. It is a political organization which has all of the advantages in the making of the decisions and the running of the election.

One may characterize the process by saying that unions are a one-party state and the problem is how to protect the democratic process when one is confronted with a one-party system; how do you make the administration of the union responsive to the views of the members when there is no organized opposition.

There comes organized opposition sporadically from occasion, as happens, but what needs to be recognized is that such opposition groups need special protection, that such opposition groups, insofar as they try to run for union office, need special protection against the enormous advantages which the incumbent officers have.

So when one looks at this, for example, it is not enough to say that union members are entitled to freedom of speech, freedom of expression and freedom of criticism in the same measure that citizens are. They in fact need more protection, if the democratic process is to function. It is not enough to have an honest count of the ballots when one is dealing with a one-party state. What is important is to try to help minority groups and opposition groups to have some effective voice in an election process in which the incumbent officers have all of the advantages.

I don't want to go any further in terms of recommending things, because I see the red light is on, but I want to close where I began. The demand that unions should be democratic derives from their role as collective bargaining representatives. It rests ultimately on the function of collective bargaining to give employees a voice in the decisions which affect their working life.

The commitment to union democracy must rest ultimately on the commitment to collective bargaining for that is the instrument of industrial democracy. In my view, those who are not fully committed to promoting and encouraging the practices and procedures of collective bargaining have no standing to discuss, much less demand, union democracy.

Thank you very much.

[The statement of Mr. Summers follows:]




Chairman Fawell. I thank you very much. I might say to all of our witnesses that after all have testified, then we will have questions from members of Congress. At that point we hope to encourage a give-and-take. If one person has stated something that you might respectfully disagree with, then feel free to express yourself.

I think oftentimes it is the give-and-take where we have a great deal of progress. We get to learn a little bit more about how each of us do feel about the matter. If you will keep that in mind, we will all have an opportunity to have some give-and-take after all of you have finished addressing the members. Mr. Rugh?





Mr. Rugh. Thank you, Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, for giving us this opportunity to be heard. I am not only here to represent the Philadelphia Carpenters for Democracy, I also here representing other groups such as ours that have sprouted up across the United States and Canada that can't be here because of geographical reasons.

We are not here to protest against our local unions, we are not here to protest against our district councils, we are here to protest the hostile takeover of an international union from its members. This takeover was done by power and money-hungry politicians masquerading as union brothers.

The 500,000 plus members of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America were stripped of their voting and representation rights that we have had since its beginning in 1881.

We no longer have a say or a vote on the following issues: we no longer vote for the business agents that represent us every day; we no longer vote on secretary-treasurers and presidents of our councils that guide our business agents and organizers; we no longer vote on bylaws that govern our union; we no longer vote on negotiated contracts for our wages and fringe benefits; we no longer vote on any dues or assessment increases.

The right of a union member's vote is a check-valve to ensure that business reps and council leaders work for the best interests of the members that pay their salaries. These leaders are no longer accountable to the general membership. They are only accountable to the person who appoints them and signs their paycheck.

You ask how was this takeover done? It was done with bribes, intimidation, high-priced lawyers and legal loopholes. The bribes came in the way of substantial pay raises for our council and local leaders to offer no resistance. Their choices were to be fired and have their locals disbanded and their charters pulled. Our general president calls this "restructuring," even though they closed locals and councils that are completely solvent.

Another example of the bribes is in bought convention delegates and financing the expenses of others. Along with threats of blackballing and never working again, intimidation tactics were enforced by firing business agents and local officers, stopping elections, lawsuits and legal action against individual members, local unions and district councils. In other words, members' dues money was being used to pay the legal fees of high-priced lawyers to strip them of their rights as union members. Don't these figures add up to labor racketeering? We think so.

We were forced to accept this plan introduced by current UBC President Doug McCarron. He calls this new plan a "representative democracy." With this system we are now represented by delegates instead of making the choices ourselves, a system where one-third of these delegates are appointed. This gives absolute power to an executive secretary-treasurer of a regional council that is first appointed by Doug McCarron and then is elected by the delegate that he in turn appoints. Instead of having autonomous locals and district councils throughout the country, we now have small kingdoms.

Isn't there a saying that goes absolute power corrupts absolutely? In Philadelphia we have approximately 10,000 members. They are represented by 60 delegates. Out of these 60, 20 are appointed and another eight are on the council payroll. That means 28 out of 60 delegates draw their paychecks from the council.

As part of the restructuring, our work dues were doubled without a rank-and-file vote. In Philadelphia, our work dues were raised from 1-1/2 to 3 percent of our gross wages, and we did not have a say in the matter. Are we concerned where our dues money is going? Absolutely. Where do we turn for help? Within our organization, petitions were forwarded to the International.

In Oregon, 2,500 signatures were collected but were denied by our general executive board. In Detroit, 1,200 were collected, again denied. In Philadelphia, 1,100 were collected, again denied.

As you can see, it is not just a few disgruntled workers. A lot of the members that came down here with me today sacrificed a day's pay and the possibility of retaliation from our leadership, plus their employers.

The Labor Department tells us that it is illegal to raise dues without a referendum vote. They tell us it is illegal to have appointed delegates vote on a higher office, yet it is happening all across the country. After receiving complaints and protests from all across the United States, still they do nothing. We began to make appointments to see some of our local Congressmen, some of whom sit on this committee.

Even though this so-called plan is obviously wrong to the union member, we got little more than lip service from them. At least with this lack of representation, we can still vote on their performance.

No more in the Carpenters Union. When Peter J. McGuire first founded the International in 1881, it was to better serve the members across the country. It was not founded to be a corporation with personal financial goals. It was not formed to make bad real estate investments, as it did in the late 1980s, when our general president and executive board were involved in a real estate scandal which amounted to the loss of $125 million of our hard-working members' dues money.

The International was not founded to threaten, intimidate and take away the autonomy of solvent local unions and councils. They are meant to work for the members that pay their salaries by settling jurisdictional disputes and to lobby for better work-related legislation.

In Philadelphia, in 1981, the International came into our council to change the voting structure for our business agents and council leaders. After three days of hearings, where our members were allowed to come in and testify and voice their concerns on the past voting structure, their voices were heard and the International made changes that were necessary to guarantee a more democratic system for our members.

This is how an International represents its members. Our general secretary is also the chairman of a bank, the First Trade Union Bank of Boston, Massachusetts. Isn't this a conflict of interest? Our general president has announced that he has been elected to the board of Perini Corporation, also out of Massachusetts. The head of an international union on the board of an international construction company? Isn't this a conflict of interest? We believe it is.

In closing, I have a little something I wanted to read. It comes from somebody that had a lot to do with our history in the past. It goes like this:

"Give all the power to the many, and they will oppress the few. Give all the power to the few, and they will oppress the many. Both, therefore, ought to have power, that each may defend itself against the other."

That, by the way, was Alexander Hamilton.


Chairman Fawell. We try not to have the crowd participate too much in these gatherings.


[The statement of Mr. Rugh follows:]




Mr. Christian. Mr. Fawell, I am Ollie Christian from Philadelphia, a member of 454 for 52 years. My understanding is that no one has the right to deny the other fellow the right and privilege to vote in whatever institution it is, no matter whether it is private or public. I hope this union doesn't go the way the Teamsters went a few years ago. We believe we can run it better than you, but we need your help now, and I hope you will answer the call.


Chairman Fawell. That was not a scheduled witness or an official one. You might give the court reporter your name so that she will have it for the record.

Mr. Bearse, the Chair recognizes you for your testimony.





Mr. Bearse. Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, good afternoon and thank you for the opportunity to testify today. I am speaking to you actually in two capacities: One as General Counsel of the Laborers' International, and one as a member of one of our locals in Boston, and I have been a member there for about 10 years.

I wanted to take this opportunity to speak a little bit about the situation in our union with respect to the Labor Management Recording and Disclosure Act (LMRDA), because we have in place, I think, some programs and reform efforts which build upon the LMRDA as their base in order to promote democracy and membership participation within the union and provide, we think, a new way of looking at and encouraging membership participation within the union without the undue intrusion of government oversight and government officials.

Basically, much of what I have to say is included in my written statement, and I won't bore you with a recapitulation of that, except to highlight a couple of key points.

In 1995 our international union, in conversation with the Department of Justice, took it upon itself to adopt a unique reform plan. Our general executive board did that.

This was strictly an internal effort. We amended our constitution to do so, and we took as our base the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act. Essentially the program, therefore, is clearly still new, it is still evolving, and it is still developing. We have encountered bumps along the road, as is to be expected, but we have also encountered great success.

There have been some notable successes in the New York area, in particular, and Chicago and elsewhere in terms of bringing true reform to locals or district councils which had histories of no elections being held for many years at a time, claims of corruption, taint by mob influence and the like. Those stories are not over, but signs of improvement are extremely encouraging. We have experienced a great growth in membership in New York City, as a result of the revitalization of our organizing program. We have had a tremendous amount of encouragement from our restructuring programs in New York and elsewhere.

Essentially, the system and the laws in place in the Laborers' International are encoded in the Code of Ethics which is part of our constitution. Guaranteeing membership rights, membership participation, membership voice in vote, they guarantee independent oversight of any trusteeship actions through independent officers not answerable to the general executive board or to any of the elected officers. They guarantee investigation of all membership complaints and, if appropriate, disciplinary action by independent officers, again not answerable to the general executive board. They guarantee direct membership election of all our general officers beginning in the year 2001, after the first-ever direct membership election of our general president in 1996. That took place under the aegis and supervision of an independently selected elections officer, Professor Stephen Goldberg of Northwestern University.

There will be an elections officer as well in 2001, again independent of the union structure and not answerable to any particular union official. Additionally, we have developed job referral programs to correct abuse where it exists and job referrals throughout our local unions.

The key point I would like to emphasize is that these programs are all overseen by independent officials, people of recognized integrity and standing, people who have career backgrounds in law enforcement generally, either in the Department of Justice or in the FBI.

The investigatory arm within the Laborer's Union, the inspector general's office, is composed of former FBI officials and former FBI field agents who are hired throughout the country to investigate disciplinary complaints and to make reports. Disciplinary action, if warranted, against members or officials, is reviewed by that office in conjunction with what we call our general executive board attorney, who is an independent practitioner here in Washington who used to be part of the Department of Justice.

Our adjudicatory process within the union no longer lies with the general executive board, but with an independent hearing officer who used to be part of the Department of Justice and was the U.S. Attorney in Pittsburgh for some time. We also have an independent appellate officer who is also part of our adjudicatory structure.

There clearly have been problems. There clearly have been difficulties. We realize the work under this program is not finished. There have been issues in Local 230 with Mr. Manos.

My point is only that the system is working. Mr. Manos, who will testify for himself, to my understanding, has had every opportunity to invoke review by these independent officials. They have gone through each and every complaint, each in turn without any interference by any elected officials from within the international union. They have decided essentially, as I understand it, that there is a political context in this particular local.

There is an election coming up next month, in June, after nominations next month. That election will be overseen, as I understand it, by the Independent American Arbitration Association. Those independent officials have basically told everyone, incumbents and anyone else interested, to kind of cool the rhetoric; there is a political issue there, and everyone would benefit by toning things down.

I would only say that Mr. Manos' issues have been reviewed, to my understanding, by the Hartford Police in terms of an alleged assault, by the FBI, by the Department of Justice, by the Department of Labor, and none of it has resulted in any kind of formal actions against any union officials.

My point is that the process has integrity. It is devoid from politics. There are guarantees against retribution or retaliation. Mr. Manos, or anyone else who chooses to make their views known, has the opportunity to do so in strictest confidence because we in the union, we official officers within the union, do not see those complaints. They are all confidential to the inspector general within our organization.

Again, we don't claim that we have a perfect system, but we do believe we have one which is on the right road here, and guarantees a full, fair, nonpolitical, nonretaliatory process to our members.


Chairman Fawell. I thank you, Mr. Bearse.


[The statement of Mr. Bearse follows:]




Chairman Fawell. Mr. Patterson?




Mr. Patterson. Hello. Thank you for giving me the privilege of being here, Mr. Chairman and members of the committee.

My name is Skip Patterson. I have worked in the construction trade since 1973. My first 17 years were nonunion and hard. I witnessed many needless accidents and five deaths on one job alone. That was a complete tragedy to see things like this.

After becoming a union member in 1990, the difference was like night and day. There was job safety, health insurance, annuity and pension. After a few years of talking with members, I realized something was wrong. Members were upset about the lack of representation, so I ran for office thinking I could do something to change this.

In 1996 I was elected President of the National Transient Lodge, the largest local lodge of Boilermakers in the United States. At the present time we have over 3,000 members.

I am sorry to say the elected officers positions in the NTL are unpaid and powerless. This is an intentional deception to make it look like the International complied with the Donovan decision. Our local lodge politics are completely dominated by the International. It is common knowledge that International President Charles Jones rules the Boilermakers with an iron fist. If you oppose his wishes, that iron fist comes down hard. The only reason I can oppose him is because he can't shrink the jurisdiction of the NTL, and I am not beholden to him for a paycheck.

As the highest elected officer, I am allowed to chair four meetings a year. That is it. They tell me that is my only duty. All other duties are performed by the National Transit Division representatives, who are appointed by and responsible to the International president. Then they are allowed to hold office in our local lodge. By controlling our lodge politically, they control the single largest voting block at the convention.

Our lodge finances are milked by the International. Approximately 85 percent of all regular dues, working dues and fees paid from the labor of the NTL members goes to entities other than the NTL treasury. The National Transit Division takes 100 percent of the field dues. The International takes approximately 51.73 percent of the remaining in per capita tax, which leaves our lodge virtually broke.

There are 99 lodges and districts under the Construction Division. We are the only lodge under the National Transient Division, and we are also under the Construction Division. No other local lodge supports two divisions.

When I went to Kansas City to look over NTL finances, I saw no disclosure of the NTL field dues or working dues as required by the Department of Labor. The National Transient Lodge secretary-treasurer, also the National Transient Division representative, told me we didn't need to put them in there because they don't go to the NTL, they go to the NTD fund.

We argued for over an hour, and when I signed the forms I wrote "under legal duress" above my name.

Shortly after arriving home, a UPS truck pulled up, and I had gotten another set of LM2 forms with a note that said sign them clean or not at all.

The phone rang and I was informed by a friend of mine I would be brought up on charges and removed from office for failure to perform my duties in a timely fashion if I didn't sign them. So I called Howard Campbell, the director of the Department of Disclosure, because I made him aware of the situation. He said go ahead and sign them and you won't be held liable.

This battle for democracy in the NTL began in 1978. We won this court battle in 1981 and again in 1984. The International president did ignore the court ruling to allow the lodge to elect its representatives and continues to use the money of the NTL members just as he chooses.

I took both court orders to the Department of Labor in Pittsburgh where E.J. Titley, a DOL agent, and I went over them. Several days later he called me and told me he had spoken with David Mitchell, a DOL agent in Kansas City, and everything was on the up and up, and so I asked him to put it in writing. I felt devastated and angry, but I couldn't give up. There were too many people counting on me. For a year and a half, I have continued to petition government agencies and have not been able to obtain an order of enforcement.

It seems as if the Department of Labor is afraid to enforce these court orders. There is presently a Department of Labor investigation going on thanks to my Congressman, John Murtha.

The court rulings have already been handed down on the political structure, but we are going to need a lot of help to recover the misappropriated funds. We had over $10 million before the court ruling, and when the International created the NTL, its account was started with $50,000. The NTD fund kept the rest, and is commonly called the International's cash cow. It is rumored that this fund has financed conventions, the Fight Back Program, loans and who knows what else. I would check it out if I could find a disclosure on it.

I don't understand how I can hold the highest elected office in a 3000-member local and be kept from the day-to-day finances and business of the lodge. This is so clearly wrong, and there hasn't been anyone to turn to that had the power to bring about justice until today.

I would like to thank you, Mr. Chairman, and members of the committee for letting me come here and share a few of our problems with you. If you can help us get this mess straightened out and find an easier way for members to rid their unions of corruption, I would be forever grateful.

I also request my written statement and attachments be accepted into the record of the executive session.


Chairman Fawell. I thank you. All of the written statements, in full of course, will become a part of the record and I thank you very much for your testimony.




Chairman Fawell. Mr. Manos.





Mr. Manos. I am vice president Stephen Manos. I am the vice president of Hartford Laborers' Local 230. Local 230 is part of The Laborers' International Union of North America, also known as LIUNA. Founded in 1903 and headquartered in Washington, D.C, LIUNA claims 750,000 members. Laborers are represented in more than 50 different industries. We are construction workers, radiation workers, hazardous waste removers, mail handlers, food processors, custodial workers, airline mechanics, park rangers and teachers.

LIUNA and the Justice Department are working under an operating agreement which allows LIUNA to police itself.

Hartford Laborers' Local 230 is run by a part-time business manager. He is also the business manager/secretary-treasurer of the Connecticut Laborers District Council. He exercises one man rule in Connecticut, and is insulated by these positions. The executive boards of both Local 230 and the district council are merely rubber stamps for the business manager.

I was strongly discouraged from running for office in 1995 by the business manager, who felt I could not be controlled. When I was elected, I had no idea of the level of unprecedented criminal behavior occurring in Local 230. I was harassed, intimidated, threatened, attacked and otherwise deprived of my democratic rights by the business manager and his associates in fact.

Because I am now a candidate for business manager of Laborers Local 230, and also because I publish an independent union newsletter, and also affiliated with which is an independent look at LIUNA, I have been deprived of work, physically assaulted at a union meeting by union officials, sued in Federal court because I turned over a tape recording of the assault to the FBI. I have been accused of barred conduct within the union. I have been brought up on false, manipulated internal charges.

I am also a witness in a RICO case statement filed in U.S. District Court alleging that Local 230 is controlled by a racketeering enterprise that dates back to the effective date of RICO, October 15, 1970, and continues to the present.

An additional complaint has been filed alleging witness tampering in this case.

A second candidate for union office, the victim of a murderous threat made by a Local 230 shop steward, has also been brought up on false manipulated internal charges at the direct instigation of the business manager.

And a related matter, another lawsuit has been filed charging the Connecticut Laborers District Council with misappropriation of union funds and willful economic deprivation. Because of the hostile environment at local union meetings, either a policeman or a LIUNA inspector general investigator is present so as to protect my rights and ensure my physical safety.

On July 30, 1997, during a Local 230 executive board meeting held in a Hartford restaurant, I was physically assaulted because I asked questions about union expenditures.

In addition to nine other union officers, also present were union lawyer Thomas Brockett, of Cheverie & Associates law firm, and LIUNA vice president Vere Haynes, who actually signed the government-sanctioned operating agreement.

I was threatened by the business manager who physically charged at me. I was then physically attacked, slammed to the concrete floor and thrown bodily out of the fire exit door of the restaurant and into the street by Local 230's sergeant at arms. I was then pursued in the street by the business manager and his brother. As I fled to my car, I heard these words, "We own you now."

I brought charges within LIUNA. The result of my complaint was that the LIUNA general executive board attorney issued a mild reprimand to the business manager. The GEB attorney's actions, in effect, have facilitated the racketeering activities directed at me.

Another similar case in point is Ronald Nobili. He has also questioned union expenditures.

He was also physically assaulted by a fellow business manager at a meeting and in front of other LIUNA officials. The GEB attorney issued a mild reprimand in this instance also, thereby establishing a further pattern of facilitating racketeering.

I have exhausted all internal remedies available within LIUNA and have contacted the New England regional manager, the LIUNA inspector general, the LIUNA GEB attorney, the LIUNA general president.

This congressional panel is the last resort for myself and many others.

My conclusion is as follows: My experience shows the Laborers' Union to be the least democratically run institutions in the United States. Union resources are misused in order to suppress democracy and dissident views.

Extremely high levels of fear, in the meaning of the Hobbs Act, permeate the total body of working laborers, even extending to retirees of Local 230.

Internal remedies do not work. The chain of command does not work. The enforcement agencies located within do not work.

The operating agreement is a total sham. The alternatives are judicial and congressional review, implementing of the consent decree in both Local 230 and the Connecticut Laborers District Council, and possible Federal trusteeship for Connecticut.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.




Chairman Fawell. And I thank you, Mr. Manos.

Excuse me, the subcommittee does have two tapes of board meetings that you described in its possession. We decided not to play the tapes today in light of the substantial profanity contained in the tapes. In addition I might say the profanity was not on the part of Mr. Manos.

In addition, the subcommittee has copies of transcripts of those two tapes in its possession. It is our understanding that the position of those tapes is yet to be determined, I gather legally speaking. Therefore, we will receive the tapes and transcript in executive session at the conclusion of this hearing, and I thank you. Mr. Donnelly.






Mr. Donnelly. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and members of the committee, sisters and brothers. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the committee for allowing me to testify at this hearing. I am a rank and file member of the Pile Drivers Local 34. We are the pile drivers, divers, bridge, wharf and dock builders in Northern California.

And I am also a member of Pile Driver Pride, which is a rank and file committee of Local 34 members formed in response to the crisis at Local 34 created by the trusteeship and takeover by the United Brotherhood of Carpenters.

This is our story, the story of Pile Drivers Local 34, our members, our families, and the hard fought work of our brothers and sisters, our fathers and mothers and their fathers and mothers to build a strong democratic union to protect their families through trade union democracy, not institutionalized labor democracy. Before I get into this story, I want you to understand where this story fits in the investigation by your committee of institutional labor and the real democracy that we seek.

The real democracy is reflected in the founding principles of Landrum-Griffin Act, the founding principles of American democracy, and that is one member, one vote.

This is a representative democracy with accountability, guaranteed membership participation and voice which carries membership responsibility to accept and support the democratically expressed will of the majority on issues facing the union.

This is what every American citizen has, the rights and responsibilities of self-governance. We do not endorse the values promoted by anti-worker lobbies who seek to destroy labor unions in their entirety by eliminating fundamental rights of workers to organize freely, vote for union representation and control their unions through democratic choices, vote and responsibility.

That, unfortunately, is the message of ballot proposition 226 in California and many such other proposals. They condemn democratic responsibility and are intended to deny the American worker of voice in the political process, preventing American workers from exercising their collective democratic voices.

The purpose of these initiatives and legislative proposals is to attack the right of working families to organize and speak with a collective voice in the democratic process and the democratic institutions which they control.

Our sad story begins on May 27, 1997, when we received a directive from our international union general president, Douglas McCarron, affiliating our autonomous, democratic, financially solvent local union with a newly established full service Northern California Carpenters Regional Council, otherwise known as the NCCRC under the mandatory "33 Bylaws." The affiliation would immediately strip our members of many long-held democratic rights. We are now denied the right to elect our representatives, negotiate our contracts, ratify or reject our contracts, enforce our contracts, and will be stripped of any control of our hiring hall under the terms of the 33 Bylaws.

We, the democratically elected leadership, decided to call a specially called meeting of our membership and invite the international and regional council representatives to explain these changes to our members.

The meeting was held June 14, 1997 and attended by approximately 500 members. After a short presentation by the new director of the NCCRC, John Casey, a motion was placed before the membership by rank and file member and was seconded by approximately 50 members spontaneously.

This motion directed the officers of Pile Drivers Local 34 to negotiate an affiliation agreement with the NCCRC which preserved the long-standing democratic rights of our union members, specifically the right to continue to elect our representatives and negotiate and ratify our contracts. A vote was taken by the members assembled and the result was unanimous, 500 to zero, to preserve our democratic rights.

We immediately sent a letter to the NCCRC requesting a meeting so we could carry out the will of the membership. The response of our general president was immediate and swift. We were notified that we were going to be placed in trusteeship and supervision by the International. They held the required hearings and came to the preordained conclusion that the members of Pile Drivers Local 34 had indeed exercised their democratic voices in opposition to the forced affiliation and thus were not capable of running our own affairs, and were placed under supervision on July 21, 1997.

The events that followed over the next month came right out of a handbook for stormtroopers. Our local union hall was stormed by a group of armed thugs, International representatives, employees of the NCCRC. We went to Federal court and got a temporary retraining order on August 8. The International's response was to freeze our bank accounts. We overcame this maneuver in Federal court and had a hearing on August 15, 1997 for a preliminary injunction. This request for injunctive relief was denied on September 5, 1997 because of the 18-month presumption that international unions enjoy under Landrum-Griffin in disputes with subordinate bodies. Even though the judge said we had a reasonable chance for success on the merits of our case, he denied relief because of the Act's 18-month presumption.

The International and the NCCRC assumed physical control of Local 34, its assets, its contracts, and its finances on September 8, 1997. Since that time they have not held any meetings with the membership, have denied our requests for financial accountability, and refused to service our membership and enforce our contracts.

Pile Driver Pride, on the other hand, continues to hold monthly membership meetings which are attended by as many as 131 members, put out a monthly newsletter, and we continue to control our own destiny democratically.

As the president and business manager of the New York Pile Drivers and Dock Builder Local 1456 stated in a letter to the Honorable Charles Haight, a Federal judge in New York, on July 9, 1997, approximately one and one-half months ago_this is a quote, "Approximately one-and-a-half months ago Local 34 was a harmonious, proud and productive union, now they are fighting for their survival because they exercised their democratic right to vote. They voted down the restructuring and merger plan and are now experiencing retaliation and intimidation and are threatened with trusteeship. This certainly cannot be democracy as it eliminates the members' right to vote and govern their local union."

Indeed, it is a cruel irony that the unwavering commitment of the Local 34 membership to democratic control of our union that allowed us to fight back an attempted takeover by the United Brotherhood of Carpenters in 1938, long before Landrum-Griffin, but now with the same remarkable and unanimous resolve of our members to fight for and insist on democratic control of Local 34, loopholes in the Act have been used by the International to block our democratic control and repudiate the very principles of union democracy which the Act was founded on.

I challenge every member of this committee as your investigation proceeds to ask each and every International officer who may appear before you if they oppose members' call for one member, one vote democracy within their union, which is the same right that every American shares in self-governance, and ask them why.

Pile Driver Pride proposes these modest reforms to Landrum-Griffin.

One member, one vote reform. Amend Section 401 of the Landrum-Griffin Act by adding the following requirement and modifying the remaining provisions accordingly: A, direct election of all union officers. The officers of every international, national labor organization and all intermediate bodies shall be elected by direct, secret ballot vote among the members in good standing.

And, two, protection of democratic rights in forced mergers and acquisitions, amend section 304 of the Landrum-Griffin Act by adding the following proviso in subsection (C): The presumption of validity of a trusteeship during the period of 18 months from the date of its establishment shall not apply to any trusteeship established in whole or in part to directly or indirectly enforce, compel or accomplish a merger, affiliation or takeover of the labor organization under trusteeship with or by another labor organization unless the organizational changes have been approved in a secret ballot vote by the members of the trusteed labor organization. If a trusteeship is established for such purposes without approval of the membership, it shall be presumed invalid in any proceeding challenging the trusteeship and its discontinuance shall be decreed unless the labor organization imposing the trusteeship shall show by clear and convincing evidence that the trusteeship is necessary for a purpose allowable under section 462 of this title.

I respectfully request to have the additional information in my written statement with me today added to the record of this proceeding, and I thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.




Chairman Fawell. And I thank you.

I haven't read all of the testimony in full, but it seems to me that we have an example in one area, as testified to by Mr. Donnelly, of what appears to be the misuse of a trusteeship to dilute from their viewpoint at least the local union which had been running rather well over many years.

In another case, which Mr. Rugh testified to, it seems to me, that the same national union is involved, as is the restructuring of the local union in relationship to the international union, and district council again ends up diluting the power and the authority of the local council without any direct vote whatsoever.

And the third, as Mr. Patterson has referred to, the alleged refusal by the national union to recognize the local union as having any power at all, and apparently that has been preceded by a number of lawsuits and goes back for a while with the Donovan case, as I understand it.


Mr. Patterson. Two decades.


Chairman Fawell. It seems to me that what has taken place is illegal. And, of course, Mr. Manos is talking about a number of basic violations of right to know and free speech and assembly and things of that sort.

So my question to Professor Summers or to others who wish to dive in, what do we do? Whose fault is it?

Is the Landrum-Griffin law now inadequate or is the Department of Labor perhaps at fault in not championing the rights of union members vis-a-vis the national union, or both? Or more? Would somebody like to take a shot at that?

Professor Summers, I notice that you did indicate that while you didn't suggest any changes in the law, you did say that there were four concerns, one of which would be the privacy of a direct election, and then also your statement that intermediate bodies such as joint councils are often treated as equivalent to the national unions and left unregulated, and they in fact perform functions normally performed by the local unions. And you add national unions, by restructuring to move functions from the local union to intermediate bodies, can significantly decrease the union member's effective voice.

And then you also mention Title III was designed to limit the ability of national officers to deprive local unions of their autonomy, particularly where trusteeships were imposed to repress opposition of the national officers. The statute does not reach, that is Landrum-Griffin, does not reach this device of abolishing local unions or merging them with other local unions without the members' consent.

So what would you suggest? We are early in this area and we want to keep as much of an open mind as we can, but what do we do?


Mr. Summers. It seems to me if one examines the political process and structure of national unions, you are dealing with a highly bureaucratic, centralized structure in most unions, and the nature of delegated powers in this bureaucracy means that they get substantial control over the decision making.

One of the corrections, it seems to me, is that there should be more in terms of direct vote. That is, all officers; local, intermediate and national officers, should be elected by direct vote rather than through conventions or delegates where you do not have effective control.

It seems to me also that increases in union dues should be according to direct vote rather than through delegates or otherwise, simply so that one can maintain adequate control.

If one views the union's political structure and one thinks in terms of the ability of opposition to gather some kind of a political base and be effective, that political base has to be at the local union level if there is to be voiced opposition and criticism of the national officers.

Therefore, it seems to me there needs to be more protection of the local autonomy.

When the Landrum-Griffin Act was enacted, the primary focus was on trusteeships. What was overlooked and not foreseen was this matter of merging unions, of lifting charters, of restructuring, all of which are other devices which are not labeled trusteeship but serve the same purpose of enabling the national union to in effect stifle democracy and opposition groups at the local level. That's not covered by the statute, and it seems to me that there needs to be more protection of local autonomy.

In short, it seems to me there are two basic things if one is going to maintain an effective democratic process in terms of the national unions, and those are more direct votes and protections of local autonomy.


Chairman Fawell. How can the national union just restructure or merge without the consent of the local unions?


Mr. Summers. There is nothing in the statute to prevent it. That is if, for example, the national officers, at national conventions which are supposed to be the basic legislative body, one critic years ago described national conventions as constituting the feeding of the animals, in which the officers controlled and operated the conventions, and so it is a very easy thing. They pass through the convention rules to enable them to merge and restructure, and then they proceed to do it without any vote, so that there is nothing in the statute to prevent that.


Chairman Fawell. So basically we are to make it clear that it would be at the local level where these types of changes would have to be approved by the local union that we could solve much of this problem.


Mr. Summers. It would help, yes.


Mr. Rugh. Mr. Chairman, as an example, in my area in Philadelphia, they took away all of our voting rights. The members never knew. They never knew it was coming until after it was done. The first official notification from our district council to the members was telling them it was a done deal. It had already happened to us, but the members were not aware.

Sadly, we only get 10 percent attendance to a local union meeting, but there was never any communication even on the local union level. They kind of sneaked in the back door and then told us it was open, and that's how they did it. The members never even had an opportunity to respond to it. It was done.


Chairman Fawell. Mr. Donnelly?


Mr. Donnelly. In our case, Mr. Chairman, we were told by the International probably three months before the May 27 notification that restructuring was going to happen, and we had heard rumors that it was happening throughout the country, and we were also told very directly you'll do it our way and there will be no vote on it.

Well, being Pile Drivers, we have always voted on everything, so we thought that we would vote on it. We didn't care. They couldn't stop us from voting on it.

Well, what the International did just before May 27, was that they came to the full-time elected officials and tried to buy us off. They offered us $12,000 a year raises. We were making $58,000 a year as elected representatives, and they offered us between $70,000 and $72,000, don't worry about your jobs, you are going to have your jobs and you are going to get a raise and a car.

When it was obvious that that was not going to succeed with us, that we were at least going to inform our members and have our members say what they wanted, they upped the ante to about $80,000 a year, and then they upped the ante again to almost $100,000 a year in my case with a job offer. This was all prior to May 27. The $100,000 wasn't quite put in those terms.


Chairman Fawell. The job offer was?


Mr. Donnelly. With the regional council. What restructuring has done, it has created full service councils where no one is elected, everyone is appointed to work for the union, to represent the membership. And there are various jobs within the regional council.

I was offered, not directly but this was in sort of indirect negotiations, the possibility of becoming the controller of the regional council, which pays about $98,000 a year.


Then I got very outraged by it. I became a union representative and I'm proud to have been an elected union representative. I do not wish to be appointed. I love democracy and I love the democratic voice; and that's why I joined a labor union, so I could have a voice in my work place.

So I was actually quite offended, and when we talked about it internally, our leadership and with our executive committee, we just decided our members were going to have a vote. And as you've seen, you've read the record, once we had the vote it was all over. We were just taken completely out. And it is criminal in one sense, because our particular local union over the next five to eight years will generate probably $6 million to $7 million additional in dues revenue, which will all go to the regional council, the International instead of back to the members through their local.

And this restructuring and reorganizing, as the professor said, is not covered in Landrum-Griffin. We found that out. We went to court. We fought. We figured that we knew we were right. There was no question that we were right. And yet there are no laws that protect us.


Chairman Fawell. As I understood it, in the court case which you instituted in order to try to block this takeover, you were blocked basically by the 18 month-perusal that just presumes that any trusteeship that is declared is automatically sacred unless there is clear and convincing evidence. And, therefore, your temporary injunction was-


Mr. Donnelly. The preliminary injunction was denied, and there is a copy in what I gave you today.


Chairman Fawell. Yes.


Mr. Donnelly. The judge in denying the preliminary injunction, he stated, and I'm sure that I can find it here, he says, "In turn, they show affiliation directive was arbitrary and so far outside the wide range of reasonableness as to be irrational. Given the evidence presented in the case, the UBC prior to organization experiences, it does not appear that Local 34 is likely to meet the stringent legal standard."

The problem that we faced was that he found in the whole thing in the balance of harms speculative on one hand and undeveloped on the other.

"The court is satisfied that the scale tips in favor of Local 34." So the judge recognized that we had a case and the scale tipped in our favor, but given the speculative nature of harm it alleges, Local 34 has not demonstrated that it tips sharply in its favor.

So in everything that we presented, it showed that we were reasonable and had a fair chance of success but it didn't tip sharply; and, therefore, the 18-month presumption kicks in and we lost.


Chairman Fawell. It certainly seems to me a lot of this could be solved by making it clear that there had to be a direct vote at the local level where the power ought to be.


Mr. Donnelly. Absolutely.


Chairman Fawell. I believe whether you delegate or give up your assets or your ability to determine what is not a collective bargaining agreement should be basic rights of the local. That ought to be the supreme entity, and it would seem to me that direct voting all up and down the scale, the intermediary or the national or local, would be the most democratic way of doing this and to the degree that that can occur.


Mr. Donnelly. Well, the members will throw the bums out, believe me, if they are not doing the job.


Chairman Fawell. Thank you. The Chair will recognize the gentleman from New Jersey.


Mr. Payne. Are we on a five-minute rule?


Chairman Fawell. Yes, we are. Sometimes it gets a little longer.


Mr. Payne. Will I be able to stretch? That's like making a quarter a dollar.


Chairman Fawell. I have always stretched a bit for you.


Mr. Payne. Thank you.

First of all, I appreciate hearing from each of you here, and I guess first of all I would probably like to know, Mr. Chairman, if the other side of the arguments that we have heard here today will be presented before your committee so that we can hear the other side of the story?


Chairman Fawell. I understand we will be inviting the Internationals.


Mr. Payne. Okay, great. Thank you.


Chairman Fawell. I imagine you will be, too.


Mr. Payne. Thank you.

First of all, as we indicated, I think it is very important that working people should be properly represented.

Professor Summers, since you are really the historian related to labor law, there are a couple of issues outside of the subject this particular hearing, but somewhat related, and I want to take advantage of your expertise while we have you in front of us.

There is legislation that is being considered in Congress that would prohibit organizing tactics called "salting". Could you give me your opinion of the legislation which would ban salting?


Mr. Summers. I do not think it should be banned, and the reason that I do not think that should be banned is not because there isn't some deviousness in it; it is because the law is so loaded in favor of the employer in these election campaigns and in the election things that it needs this offsetting manner. That is, the employer can refuse to let a union business agent or union representative even come on the parking lot to distribute literature.

So although the work place is the national forum for discussing union matters or matters concerning the work place, the net effect is the employer can legally bar any union representative from the place. And salting is the product of that rule, and that means it is a device by which the unions seek to get somebody on the work place so they can present the union view to the workers.

And as such, it seems to me it is not even enough to balance, but what I would say is that the better solution is to say that union officers and representatives have a right to come out to the work place to discuss these matters with the members in their free time. Then salting would disappear.


Mr. Payne. Thank you very much.

As a matter of fact, sort of in line with that question, there are recent studies that indicate as many as 10,000 workers a year are fired for trying to organize a union, and I wonder if in your opinion, the lack of adequate penalties for firing a worker serve as an impediment to work place democracy? Evidently it is done fairly regularly.


Mr. Summers. There is an element the law has not developed to actually protect the processes of organization, to actually encourage the processes of organization, and employers have taken every advantage to exploit the advantages they have; so that the problem in my view is that for the most part, in most circumstances, employers are prepared to use any means available, particularly legal means but sometimes illegal means, to frustrate what was the national policy declared in 1935 to encourage the practices and procedures of collective bargaining as a method of establishing industrial democracy. Most employers don't believe in industrial democracy. They do the best they can to defeat it, and the problem is that the law has not developed so as to protect that right.


Mr. Payne. I have one final question, because we don't often have such a scholar and someone so familiar with the legislation here too often. There is legislation that my colleague, Chairman Fawell, supports called the TEAM Act. The TEAM Act, as you know, is where the employer selects the negotiating team of workers to negotiate with. What is your feeling on that?


Mr. Summers. The Team Act in my view is a perversion of the notion of industrial democracy. That is, it is to create an organization among employees which is not an independent organization, which is not their voice, but the employees' voice tempered or controlled by the employer.

And it seems to me that it is essentially to create a form of participation which is not genuine participation, which does not represent the democratic voice of the employees.

There are ways of meeting this problem, but what it has to include are devices to protect and ensure the independence of anyone who speaks for the employer or who purports to speak for the employer, and the Team Act does not do that. It leaves these organizations ersatz structures of participation in the control or domination of the employer. And that's a perversion of the original purpose of the Wagner Act and any purpose that collective bargaining can serve.


Mr. Payne. Thank you very much. I guess my time is rapidly running out.

I would just like to address Mr. Donnelly about mergers and acquisitions, although in business it seems that there are hostile takeovers. Mr. Donnelly, I know your argument about the autonomy, as a matter of fact let me say too that it is not necessarily uncommon; I don't like the practice of hostile takeovers, but it happens.

Secondly, as I listened very carefully to your testimony, you mentioned that they had been dangling before you some offers to come on board and keep quiet, and that unfortunately is a practice that happens in society.

We had a gentleman that was elected to Congress as a Democrat and he wanted to be on Ways and Means, so the opposition offered him a position on Ways and Means and he turned Republican, which was great for him, until he lost in his primary. I guess it is human nature, and I commend you for not buying on; but they said that 34 of the 35 unions out in Northern California supported the restructuring. Were they not affected?


Mr. Donnelly. Yes, that is a very good question.

In 1989 there was essentially restructuring in Northern California of the carpenter locals, and in 1989 every construction carpenter local in Northern California lost their rights to elect business agents and to essentially ratify their contracts at that time. It was a restructuring. It was fought in court by a variety of carpenter construction locals, and they lost in court.

The national mergers that have been taking place caught up with Pile Drivers Local 34, and you see we are or were an independent autonomous local in Northern California whose jurisdiction transcended any one district council. Our jurisdiction includes the 46 northern counties of California, northern Nevada and Utah. It is a very huge jurisdiction.

And so the International was caught in a quandary in the first set of mergers about what to do with us since we were affiliated with about nine district councils at the time. So in Northern California when the initial restructuring came about, we just went our merry way; and one of the mistakes, quite candidly, that we made is that we didn't aggressively enough support our brother and sister carpenters who were fighting with them, because had we fought side by side with them, we might have been able to turn it around at that time.

But in the second round of restructuring, the members were not affected in any way, shape or form because they had already lost those rights for eight years, and our members were just used to having those rights. So that's what happened.

I presume you are reading from that letter that John Casey sent out to everyone apologizing for our actions.


Mr. Payne. Yes. My final question, because my time has expired and I don't have the prerogative of the Chair.


Chairman Fawell. You may continue.


Mr. Payne. Mr. Manos, you made a number of charges here. I was wondering, have you brought those charges before the U.S. Attorney's Office?


Mr. Manos. Yes, I have, including many other entities.


Mr. Payne. FBI?


Mr. Manos. That's correct.


Mr. Payne. Department of Labor?


Mr. Manos. That's correct.


Mr. Payne. The Laborers General Executive Board?


Mr. Manos. I don't know about that one.


Mr. Payne. Well, four of the five above.

Now, the FBI, they are pretty thorough and they look into things, especially when it involves unions or breaking laws and so forth. How do you attest to the fact that the U.S. Attorney and the FBI found your charges insufficient?


Mr. Manos. They did not find them insufficient, they didn't act on them.


Mr. Payne. Well, if they don't act, they are insufficient. If the charges were sufficient, they would act.


Mr. Manos. I can't answer for them, but I can say that I, like many other laborers and labor officials across the country, have been rejected and abandoned by certain entities for inexplicable reasons. I'm not the only one.


Mr. Payne. All right. I take it even locally since the Federal Government did not_what about the local Hartford police, you complained to them?


Mr. Manos. Yes, I did.


Mr. Payne. And did they investigate the alleged assault?


Mr. Manos. No, they didn't. They conducted a non-investigation.


Mr. Payne. How do you conduct a non-investigation? You've got to do something. Did they ask you anything?


Mr. Manos. No.


Mr. Payne. How do you attest to that then? This is your local police department?


Mr. Manos. Yes.

I talked to many individuals in the Hartford police department. I don't want to get off on a tangent about the Hartford police department. I noticed a book in one of their offices while I was waiting, and it said that the best thing for an investigator to do is to interview the victim and/or witness.

I was never interviewed. I was a victim and a witness. If we want to talk about the Hartford police department, I can show you this. This is dated May 2, "Misstep Embarrasses Police, City Officer Faces Discipline for Walking Off With Evidence." The Hartford police department failed to arrest the right man on a murder charge, even though the Federal Government and reliable witnesses informed them that they had the wrong man.

I have no police power and I have no powers of investigating, but I do know how to read the paper. If anybody wants to verify this, they may select, and you will find the whole series of articles involving this.

Now, in my particular case let me repeat, there was a non-investigation.


Mr. Payne. Well, I don't think that that is the way it should be. I raise these questions because you made such strong allegations here, and I felt a responsibility to find out why haven't been acted upon. But I do think that my time has expired.


Mr. Manos. I would like to answer, if I may.


Mr. Payne. Yes.


Mr. Manos. You'd have to ask those organizations.

What we did find was, myself and other people in talking to people, it is essentially not my job mentality. Because I also went to my Federal elected officials and my locally elected officials, and we can also mention the state attorney's office, the local state's attorney and the chief state's attorney. The U.S. Attorney in Connecticut.

I think it might be in order that perhaps there be an individual or staff member that might want to look into this. They might find it to be extremely interesting. Thank you.


Mr. Payne. Well, like I said, in most instances we haven't found too many shy U.S. Attorneys, that's for sure, or special prosecutors, so it seems kind of ironic that in your case they have been a little shy. If you have been reading the papers lately and looking at TV, your case is different from what we have been finding in general.

I yield back the balance of my time, which has expired.


Chairman Fawell. I would just like to point out that we have a letter from the office of the GEB attorney for LIUNA, and it states in reference to this case that the sergeant-at-arms to physically remove any member from a union meeting should be employed rarely and only in the most extreme circumstances.

In our view this was not one of those extreme circumstances. I have read the transcript verbatim and it is beyond me how one could justify the extreme force and the profanity and the manner in which Mr. Manos was dealt with, but I can't explain why other entities did not necessarily take action.

In all fairness, this hearing has nothing to do with the salting legislation nor with the Team Act, but I do want to make it clear that in the salting legislation we did not ban salting. The Supreme Court Townsend decision stands. What we did do was state that in instances where the applicant is not bona fide, if a regional attorney should find that that is the case, that on the basis that he his primary reason for applying for the job was in furtherance of other employment, then only in those circumstances a factual decision can be made by the regional attorney, then the employer would have the right to set that forth.

I don't mean did we ban employment, and the Team Act is dealing only with a non-union setting where employees would want to be able to communicate with the employer. We make it clear in no way could it be deemed to be a collective bargaining entity. So there are two sides of these issues, but I just think they really aren't relevant.


Mr. Payne. They are relevant.


Chairman Fawell. Let us hear the comments from the gentleman from New Jersey.


Mr. Payne. Before they go home, I would love to say something.


Chairman Fawell. The chair is just about to recognize the gentleman from North Carolina, Mr. Cass Ballenger.


Mr. Ballenger. Thank you. I appreciate that.

Everybody is talking about what has been done and what should be done, and you read the rules and regulations and he wrote the law, and there has got to be somebody somewhere that is supposed to enforce this law on the books.

And my understanding from what I'm hearing is that the Labor Department probably is the ultimate and should be of some assistance. Let me ask everybody but Professor Summers. You are theoretical, but these other guys have to live with what you wrote.

Has anybody been assisted by the Department of Labor when you get overrun by pressure from above?


Mr. Donnelly. We looked at many remedies, including going to the Department of Labor and the National Labor Relations Board. The Department of Labor has no statutory authority to deal with mergers and acquisitions of unions. The National Labor Relations Board, we filed some complaints that were relevant, but they are relevant around our contract issues. Since we had our own contract that we had negotiated we made some claims with them and they were willing to listen to them, but once we were put under a trusteeship, the trusteed local union then withdrew the complaints and had every right to withdraw the complaints, and we couldn't re-file the complaints because we were no longer the bargaining parties.


Mr. Patterson. As I read in my statement, we had two court orders that were appealed and were turned over by the Tenth Circuit Court. I had to get my Congressman to get the Department of Labor to act because they wouldn't do anything. There was nobody to push them.


Mr. Ballenger. I happen to be on another committee that is investigating the Teamsters' election. It seems to me that when this idea of a trusteeship was drawn up, you didn't expect it to be used the way it was, but the way that it has been used in just about every situation I have seen is as a weapon to take away from the individual unions the right to have any rights. Somewhere along the line, it seemed to me one of the most constructive things we could do is rewrite the trusteeship law so that the national can't take away the rights of the individual unions.

It appears to me that a rather a large mistake was made, and it was very idealistic, and I understand that you represent the idealistic side in this particular thing.

I would like to say one thing about the democracy at the local level. I happen to live in a part of the country where we had the same one-party system for about 50 years, and if you would learn how to run a local election, it doesn't make any difference if it is local or not, it matters who is in charge of the ballot box and who is in charge of the ballot and who is in charge of counting and who is allowed into the ballot situation.

I recognize that LIUNA, because of the Reader's Digest and a few other articles that have been written about it, was forced to reorganize or do something and have elections where the FBI and all of these wonderful statistical analysis groups like the Department of Labor and the rest of them were involved in making sure that the election was honest. They did the same thing for the Teamsters. Let me just ask, do you not still have the same president that you had before on these honest elections?


Mr. Bearse. We have a president who is elected by the membership for the first time in our history, and it was a contested election.


Mr. Ballenger. All elections are contested.


Mr. Bearse. No, they are not. The history in the Laborers is they were not contested elections.


Mr. Ballenger. In your particular one, the Mafia calls the shots and he won again.


Mr. Bearse. No, that is not true. He did win again, that is true.

The Mafia called the shots in the election; that is not true.


Mr. Ballenger. It is not unknown to mankind that he is very close to the Mafia.


Mr. Bearse. That is an allegation that has been printed a number of times. It has not been proven to my knowledge at this time. No one has proved that.


Mr. Ballenger. You didn't sue Reader's Digest for writing that?


Mr. Bearse. No, we didn't.


Mr. Ballenger. Any reason?


Mr. Bearse. Yes, because the libel laws make that a futile exercise. The general president is a public figure. There is no point in trying to prove malice. People are entitled to a point of view, people are entitled to read it. That was our attitude.


Mr. Ballenger. Generally speaking here, those of you who have been mistreated in this particular situation, do you find that if we wrote a sensible trusteeship law which included some kind of protection for the individual unions and took the power away from the national, to some extent, the situation would be better? Then there would be a national control of a sort; somehow it seems to me if you rewrote that, the situation might be different. There is an ultimate weapon that nobody talked about using, I don't know what you do about it and whether it is possible, but the only reason that unions in Washington or the leadership somewhere have any power at all is because you pay dues.

Has anybody at the local level thought of just not paying your dues and running the union yourselves?


Mr. Donnelly. We certainly examined every option when we went through our struggle. We did not examine the option of not paying dues and not being a union. We did not examine that option.

We looked at the option of potentially being independent. It was proposed by the International's attorney in court in one of our court sessions, I believe you can find it in one of the transcripts that is provided, where he said, "well, they had a remedy, why don't they try to be independent of us."

Well, that presents a whole myriad of problems, not the least of which is the fact that our employers have a contract with the union. They do not have a contract with us as individuals, so we can form our own union, but without work for the members, what good is it?

And so I think that the two proposals, specific proposals that we are bringing forward in terms of one member, one vote and in terms of amending the trustee provision of the law will go a long way to remedy the abuses that have occurred in our situation, and I'm sure many other situations, too. It is just it is very difficult candidly to fight these things, and it is very difficult to get people to fight these things. Most people need a job and most people will do whatever they need to do.


Mr. Ballenger. Let me give Mr. Patterson a shot.


Mr. Patterson. If there was legislation enacted to guarantee local lodge autonomy at the very basic level, it would probably eliminate a lot of the problems, like hostile takeovers, but it has to be worded carefully. Professor Summers is well aware of this. We have talked about it before.

It has to be on a basic local level for each and every member; one man, one vote. One man, one voice, so a voice can be heard when there is a problem. A cheap and inexpensive way for them to go to a board or a director, executive officers or whatever, and have them heard. There are members out there crying and there is nobody to listen to them.


Mr. Ballenger. Even when you do that, and I think it is a probably good idea, you need somebody upstairs that you can appeal to that will actually listen to your appeal.


Mr. Manos, there isn't anybody left in this world to appeal to unless you had a whole bunch of money to go to the Supreme Court.


Mr. Manos. We avoided UNICEF, sir.


Mr. Ballenger. Pardon me for laughing, I am sorry.


Chairman Fawell. Mr. Rugh raised his hand. Fire away.


Mr. Rugh. To go back to what you were asking, we are not here as far as stopping to pay our dues, we are here because we love the union. It has given us a lot of pride. We are proud to be union members.

We are trying to fix something that went wrong in it. The Landrum-Griffin Act is wonderful. Ways to get about that, you talked about the difference between local and national leadership. The way that they are getting around these is the intermediate bodies in between the local and the national level as far as the district council.

If you do away with the delegate vote and have one member, one vote, each step that it takes, it still has to come back to the bottom member, the rank and file member. And if you do that and do away with the delegation vote, they don't have the power to do these types of things that can destroy an organization.


Mr. Ballenger. One of things that I read in the notes here is that they argued that trusteeship was necessary to clean up and make things more efficient and do all this other stuff.

I don't know how it works, to be honest with you, but if you had to have membership vote on everything, would that stop you from accomplishing everything?


Mr. Rugh. No, not on the large scale. To be able to have a trusteeship and take over a local union or a district council because it is corrupt or is crooked, that is what those words were put in there for, for situations like that.

But to be able to go into a solvent, autonomous local union or district council that has operated on its own and come up on the plus side work-wise and member representation-wise for any number of years, that serves no purpose to restructure that local. It doesn't serve any purpose at all other than a power struggle or a power move to be able to control that area or that local union. That is the only way.

Up in New England they took all six states and put them into one regional council because it is divide and conquer. It is easier to control. They can control one small body. Some members have to travel 2- or 300 miles one way just to attend a meeting at the district council level.


Mr. Ballenger. Professor Summers, Mr. Patterson said he had discussed this with you and I am sure you have thought about it. Have you thought of any specific way to change trusteeships or anything in the Landrum-Griffin bill, something simple? Nobody wants to rewrite that law. As much trouble as you had getting it passed, you would never get it through here again. But if you had something simple that would be protective of the unions, I think you could get everybody that would be willing to go along with something like that.


Professor Summers. I don't have the words immediately at hand, but if you gave me an hour I could find them.


Mr. Ballenger. Sometime when you have a chance, how about writing what you think would be worthwhile and submitting it to the committee.


Professor Summers. Yes.


Mr. Ballenger. Mr. Chairman, would you -


Chairman Fawell. Absolutely. I was going to make the same offer to the gentleman, that he has the ability, I think, because on both sides I think you have the confidence of both parties and you are an idealist. Nobody questions your love for the union movement, as I think most everybody sitting there at the table has a deep respect for the union movement. I would second that and make an offer to you, if you would like to sit down and give us your recommendations, give them to me and give them to Congressman Payne also, we will both look at them. And hopefully I have found Mr. Payne to be a reasonable man, and perhaps we can, maybe we can actually help and not have to worry about what is in it for either political party. But what is in it for the people who are here today and for a strong local union movement.

I agree with you. If there is more democracy, you are going to have stronger unions and you are going to have a better America, I think, under those circumstances. So I will join with the gentleman from North Carolina. I would hope that the gentleman from New Jersey would join and the three of us would say, submit to us your recommendations and we will be most happy to try to put them together in terms of a bipartisan presentation.


Professor Summers. I think that when the statute was drafted, when it was created, that there was the lack of foresight to see how things would be manipulated to get around the provisions of the statute. I did not see it. The others did not see it. But now we know more about what it may take. So it is not that it is so difficult to find words that could improve. None will be perfect. But we just didn't think about it.


Chairman Fawell. And now we have that in retrospect. We can look back and see how it all works out over the years and that there can be strengthening. I would hope that you would see fit to accept our offer.


Professor Summers. Let me say, there is a really fundamental problem here. And that is, insofar as members are left to enforce their own rights in court, there is the problem of paying lawyers' fees. And that becomes a really major obstacle. Insofar as under Title III of the trusteeship and then elections, there is a potential role for the Secretary of Labor, there is here the difficulty that the Department of Labor is just not an adequate body to enforce those, because the Secretary of Labor, and the whole Department of Labor, must regularly deal with the national unions and the national officers, and they have to stay on good terms with - I mean, they are working on wage hour, discrimination, lots of other things, so that there is a natural resistance in the Department of Labor to really work, to really attack vigorously those people with whom they are regularly working.

So there is this problem of how one creates the procedures or the agency to get an adequate enforcement of the statute.


Chairman Fawell. Well, you might put your good mind to that, as we will, too.


Professor Summers. That will take more than an hour.


Chairman Fawell. I have heard suggestions that DOJ or somebody else should perhaps come in as a more objective entity and take a lot of the enormous burden off the Department of Labor in that regard.

The gentleman still has the time.


Mr. Ballenger. Actually, I already had torn out your folder here to stick in my pocket, realizing that is kind of a beginning of what the professor might like, and with my past reputation as far as unions are concerned, and saying that I think we could get a legitimate agreement that we could work together, because as far as I can see, you are all getting the shaft. And it is not business that is doing it, it is, to some extent, it is the lack of interest on your own part.

I have been in politics long enough to recognize that if people don't show any interest in what goes on, they get people elected that will step out and move away and start running things all by themselves, because nobody seems to pay any attention until you get to the point where all of a sudden they have stripped you of your rights.

The one thing, no matter how you draw that, Professor, you give them the right to regulate themselves, they have got to show up. Democracy does not work if you are not there to not only operate it but to defend it. I would like to say that I will do everything I can to help if we can draw up something worthwhile. I will be glad to work as hard as I can for it.


Mr. Donnelly. You are absolutely correct when you say that oftentimes it is hard to get people to show up. In our case it is unprecedented. I haven't heard of any instance where 500 members have been willing to come out on a Saturday to a meeting, and this is a local that has got 1000 total members including retirees, so that is a huge turnout. But I do think that if we empower union members with the possibility of controlling the unions through a democracy, we give them the right to vote for representative democracy.

You had a question before, if they vote on every issue, would work be able to get done. I don't think any of us are asking to vote on every issue. I think we are asking to vote for the people who make the decisions and have a real say, this one-member/one-vote, very simple changes. We don't need to radically overhaul. The system works pretty well. But we just need some simple changes to steer it back on a course that Landrum-Griffin actually tried to put it on.


Mr. Ballenger. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.


Chairman Fawell. I thank you. There was a writing by a well-recognized gentleman who was a part of the Landrum-Griffin group, the people who were very idealistic about passage of the same. I am going to take the liberty of quoting this gentleman. It referred to the Landrum-Griffin as being sort of a bastard child, if I could use that expression. And I quote, it said, "It was the progeny of two groups which had nothing in common, but became for the moment and without any affection or interaction political bedfellows, those who urged the statute not out of concern for better unions but out of a hope that unions would die away, and on the other side, the small group of idealists who believed in unions, who wanted them stronger and who thought that strong unions could and should be democratic.

"Allied against these two groups was almost the entire labor movement leadership, entire labor movement. It was a bill passed over the solid and adamant opposition of the leaders of organized labor."

Professor Summers, I think, wrote that in a Law Review article. You see, I am checking up on you. And so I think that if you can get those idealists back together again and help us out here, I think the three of us would appreciate receiving your epistle on your suggestions. I think there are just some basic solid steps that we could take and learn by doing, as my 7-year old grandson says. And thus we ought to be able to do something here.

I thank you all for taking your time. I hope that we in Congress can be of help to you. It is always a difficult matter when you are talking about new labor laws, because we are somewhat fixed in political views, it seems. But we have got an opportunity here to be able to do something.

I would like to hold the record open for one month to allow the witnesses the opportunity to supplement the record with a list of all efforts undertaken by them to seek internal and external remedies with regard to their concerns discussed here today.

Our witnesses today have refrained from making incriminating reference to certain individuals. Their written testimony has been similarly redacted to avoid the incriminating references. I believe, however, that it is important for the committee to have complete testimony of the witnesses available for our members.

Therefore, under House Rule XI, clause 2(k)(5), I assert that the unredacted statements that I am about to enter into the record may tend to incriminate certain people and move that the committee enter into executive session in order to receive such testimony. Is there an objection?

Hearing none, it is so ordered. We are in executive session.

Without objection, the following documents will be entered into the record: One, the full testimony of Mr. Manos, two tapes of board meetings and transcripts of those tapes; and, two, the full testimony of Mr. Patterson.

The committee stands adjourned. Thank you, once again, for taking your time to be here.

[Whereupon, at 3:45 p.m., the subcommittee was adjourned.]