Jim Clyburn's Silence for Sale?

The Obama Administration’s politically motivated attack on free enterprise in South Carolina ramps up while Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) is suspiciously silent.

The National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) lawsuit against Boeing Corporation’s new production facility in North Charleston, South Carolina is causing ripples through corporate, union and state government worlds. The NLRB contends that Boeing is building its new plant in the right-to-work state of South Carolina rather than the union-heavy Washington State – the company’s home – as retaliation against the unions. About the lawsuit former NLRB Chairman Peter Schaumber said “This board views its role as to promote unionization, and with that in mind, that will be their focus in deciding this case.

Clearly, this “issue” has nothing to do with unfair practices. It’s political bullying at the highest level. Washington’s Democrat governor, Christine Gregoire was heavily recruited by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in the 2008 primary. Gregoire endorsed Obama on the eve of the Washington caucuses, in which Obama won every county. In the general election, the state went for Obama 58% to 41% for Senator John McCain. Both U.S. Senators from Washington State are Democrats, Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray.

Murray is fourth highest-ranking Democrat and the highest-ranking woman in the Senate. She sits on the Appropriations Committee (Subcommittees on Defense; Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies; and is Chair of the Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies) and the Budget Committee.


Oh, and one of President Obama’s appointees to the NLRB is the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) associate general counsel, Craig Becker.

In a 1993 Minnesota Law Review article, written when he was a UCLA professor, he explained that traditional notions of democracy should not apply in union elections. He wrote that employers should be barred from attending NLRB hearings about elections, and from challenging election results even amid evidence of union misconduct. He believes elections should be removed from work sites and held on “neutral grounds,” or via mail ballots. Employers should also be barred from “placing observers at the polls to challenge ballots.” The Wall Street Journal

The new Boeing facility is being built at the Charleston International Airport less than a mile from South Carolina’s 6th Congressional District to the east and 11 miles from the 6th to the west. The state’s Congressman from the 6th is James Clyburn, the House Assistant Minority Leader and former Majority Whip. As Assistant Minority Leader, he is the third-ranking Democrat in the House behind House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer.

Thus, Clyburn (1) is a powerful dude in the Obama Administration and (2) has a stake in Boeing’s presence in North Charleston. OK, Clyburn’s constituents have a stake … When the company and the state/local leaders held a press conference/celebration in Charleston in 2009, Clyburn said “Boeing is a game-changer for South Carolina” and praised the move by saying “This program here is to further the top three priorities in the state: jobs, more jobs and many more jobs.” Apparently, Clyburn’s true priority is furthering the Obama anti-free market agenda, because he has neither objected to the NLRB lawsuit nor supported it.

Presumably (though we all really know better), a REPRESENTATIVE is supposed to represent those who elected him or her. As appears to be the case with Jim Clyburn, “representation” is an amorphous term. It is far more than reasonable to expect him to be leading the challenge to the NLRB as does his neighboring Congressman, Rep. Tim Scott (R-1st), in whose district the plant is located.

Clyburn’s South Carolina’s 6th district contains some of the state’s most underprivileged areas. A heavy minority population, vast unemployment, underfunded schools and public services make this section of the Palmetto State particularly in need of the kind of economic boost Boeing will bring. But Representative James Clyburn is sacrificing the needs of the population he purports to represent for … what, exactly?

Is his loyalty to one black man – Barack Obama – greater than his loyalty to thousands of African-Americans in his district?

Is he a coward? Does he not have the manhood and intellectual integrity to stand against a great wrong?

Or is it something else?

In 2010, Boeing donated $10,500 to Clyburn’s reelection campaign ($500 more than he got in 2008). Remember the SEIU member of the NLRB? Well, SEIU gave Clyburn $10,000 last year and since 1998, he has been the union’s beneficiary to the tune of $52,500. During that same period, Boeing has donated only $22,500 to Clyburn.

It would seem Boeing – and Clyburn’s constituents – have been outbid by SEIU.

Well, they say money talks, but money also pays people not to.


One comment

  1. Surely you’re not suggesting that Ol’Enos’ vote is for sale?!? Say it isn’t so!

    While the Sate house is debating redistricting, I hope they come up with a way to get rid of this poverty pimp once and for all.


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