As House and Senate conferees attempt to reconcile their different approaches to the America COMPETES Act (H.R. 4521), a group of Senators are demanding the final bill prohibit stock buybacks, outsourcing jobs overseas, and other labor relations provisions.
Background: In February, the House passed the America COMPETES Act which included several pro-union provisions, and in March the Senate passed the legislation with several amendments. The bill is now in a conference committee with members of both chambers attempting to agree on a final version of the legislation.
The letter from Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-WA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and Casten urges conferees to include provisions in the final legislation that would require companies that receive funds under the bill to remain neutral in any union organizing efforts and prohibit them from buying back their stock, outsourcing jobs, and repealing existing collective bargaining agreements.
Outlook: It is unclear if the conferees, which include several GOP members, will agree to include any of these provisions in the final bill or if these three Senators can muster enough support to prevent the final bill from becoming law without the provisions they want.