Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) let all sides have it Thursday after the Senate voted to impose a new union contract on railroad workers.
In several tweets and a statement posted to Twitter, Hawley unleashed on the Biden administration, Democrats in the Senate, and establishment Republicans for voting to impose the new union contract on railroad employees. The Senate passed the bill 80-15 to put the contract into effect, avoiding a potentially catastrophic rail strike. But the Senate blocked a provision that would have given workers seven days of paid sick leave.
“Today the Senate had the chance to stand up for railroad workers who frequently risk their lives and health on the job, just trying to support their families,” Hawley said in a statement Thursday evening. “Instead, the Senate sided with Joe Biden. Workers were asking for a handful of sick days per year. Biden and the Senate said no. I’d like to know how many of the White House staff, and how many members of Congress and their staff, are still ‘working remotely,’ all while they deny railroad workers more than one day of sick leave a year. The House of Representatives, for heaven’s sake, is still proxy voting—with many members not showing up to work at all—because of the Covid ‘health risk.’ But railroad workers can’t have more than one day of sick leave. And it wasn’t as if workers were asking Congress to intervene on their behalf. No, this was the White House and management and union bosses teaming up to use federal law to force workers to accept contracts they rejected in negotiations. And then people in DC wonder why working Americans think the system is rigged.”
“Today was also a chance for Republicans to stand up for working people and against the DC establishment,” he added. “They missed it. But make no mistake, the people who put on overalls or pick up a shovel or stand on the assembly line every day are worth fighting for. And the Republican Party will have no future without them.”
Today’s rail vote was a significant one. A few thoughts – pic.twitter.com/IYfPBxL14E
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) December 1, 2022
Hawley also lamented the impact on railroad workers before and during the vote. “GOP wants to be a working class party, or should want to,” Hawley tweeted before the vote. “We’re about to have our first test vote – with the workers or with Biden.”
“Joe Biden and the suits on one side, railroad workers on the other side,” he added. “Easy call.”
“Sad day for workers,” he tweeted after the bill passed. “At the behest of Joe Biden, US Senate now using federal law to force railroad workers to accept contracts they voted to reject,” he wrote again.
The vote passed in the Senate 80-15. Ten Republicans voted against the bill, along with five Democrats. The Republicans were:
- Tom Cotton of Arkansas
- Ted Cruz of Texas
- Marco Rubio and Rick Scott of Florida
- Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania
- Susan Collins of Maine
- Tim Scott of South Carolina
- Bill Hagerty of Tennesee
- Dan Sullivan of Alaska
The five Democrats were:
- Kirsten Gillibrand of New York
- Jeff Merkley of Oregon
- Bernie Sanders of Vermont
- John Hickenlooper of Colorado
- Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts
But the amendment to give railroad workers seven days of paid sick leave, sponsored by Bernie Sanders, failed 52-43. Six Republicans supported the amendment, including Hawley, Cruz, Rubio, Mike Braun of Indiana, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and John Kennedy of Louisiana.