America could be on the verge of a transportation shutdown, with Fox Business reporting last week that some of the nation’s largest railroad unions have rejected a labor agreement pushed by President Joe Biden.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said last Tuesday that the president is “directly involved” in negotiations but refused to provide details. One congressman says it’s a sign that the White House wants to shield Biden before chaos ensues.
“About to come off the rails”
That was the allegation put forward by Florida Republican Rep. Michael Waltz when he appeared on “Fox & Friends” this past Friday.
The railway union deal is about to go off the rails — and Biden’s pretending he’s had nothing to do with it. YET he took all the credit before the midterm elections. So, which is it? pic.twitter.com/cSDGI00crV
— Rep. Mike Waltz (@michaelgwaltz) November 25, 2022
Waltz told host Steve Doocy that Jean-Pierre is “trying to distance the president because this deal with the railroad unions is literally about to come off the rails, where three of the 12 unions have rejected it.”
“But what’s so interesting and convenient is before the midterm elections, he was taking credit for saving the country’s economy in crafting this deal as a dealmaker,” Waltz continued.
“He was taking credit then. But now that the unions have rejected it, suddenly, he’s had nothing to do with it. But then he forgot his talking points,” the congressman alleged.
Dennis Pierce serves as national president of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET), and he discussed the dispute last week with Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo.
“Have no scheduled days off”
According to Pierce, the anger being felt by railroad workers centers on “sick pay and just time away from work in general.”
“The engineers and conductors work on a rotating call basis,” he explained, adding, “Many of them have no scheduled days off.”
“It would be a foreign concept to most Americans not to know when you’re ever going to get a day with your family,” he continued.
“And in the middle of the pandemic, the railroads adopted more strict attendance policies. And when people need to take time off with whether they’re sick, even with COVID or for their families, they’ve been given attendance points and in many cases terminated,” Pierce concluded.