All Senate Democrats have joined in a letter to DoD opposing a recent memo in which President Trump authorized that department to restrict or revoke bargaining and other union activities on national security grounds.
The memo—which grants that discretion to the department’s secretary or any other Senate-confirmed political appointee delegated by the secretary—“represents a serious incursion on federal employees’ collective bargaining rights and sets a dangerous precedent in suggesting that those rights somehow compromise our national security,” the letter says.
“There is no evidence that the presence of unionized employees has ever had any negative impact on DoD’s national security mission,” it says. “In fact, DoD and its unions have always had a mutually beneficial partnership . . . Moreover, a unionized workforce allows DoD to recruit and retain highly-skilled employees who might otherwise work elsewhere.”
The message follows letters making similar arguments from six senators, including Republican Susan Collins of Maine, and from a coalition of federal employee unions, and strengthens the chances of a move in an upcoming defense spending bill to prevent DoD from carrying it out.