Before Labor Day, the day we honor American workers for their contributions to our lives, Iowa Republican Speaker of the House Linda Upmeyer joked about Iowa’s public labor employees and the collective bargaining process.

At a small gathering of Republican legislators and donors on Aug. 29, Speaker Upmeyer disrespectfully stated, “If we fail at holding the majority, the first thing to go would be the collective bargaining bill, where we put it back to having people negotiate wages, but not for everything under the sun.” Those “people” are most public employees including teachers. Things “under the sun” are overtime, sick leave, vacation, insurance ...

Before this statement she praised Republican Rep. Shannon Lundgren for her work. Lundgren tells constituents she listened to them and voted against the collective bargaining bill that gutted public labor in 2017. But she did not challenge Upmeyer as she insulted her constituents.

It’s significant that Rep. Ashley Hinson from Cedar Rapids, one of the Republican candidates running for U.S. Representative for Iowa’s 1st Congressional District, voted to gut collective bargaining. Both representatives voted to slash the Workman’s Compensation bill in 2017.

It’s no wonder on Labor Day there was only one Republican candidate in the Dubuque Labor Day parade. Their party is no friend to labor.

Let’s see if Lundgren and Sen. Carrie Koelker participate in the labor sponsored Crackerbarrel session this winter. Even having Dubuque County constituents, they were “no shows” last year.

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