Obama’s Big Deal: The 2009 Federal Stimulus – Labor and Employment Law at the Crossroads

Source: Mitchell H. Rubinstein, Rutgers Law Record, Vol. 33, No. 1, 2009

From the abstract:
The collapse of the economy at the end of 2008 is one of the most important issues of our time and has resulted in the passage of historic bailout and stimulus legislation. Newly elected President Obama has recognized that his political future depends upon the economy rebounding. This Essay focuses on an important aspect of the 2009 economic stimulus, formerly known as the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which seems to been left out of the political debate; the effect this stimulus will have on labor and employment law. This Essay asserts that this stimulus is much more than just an economic package. It is a reflection of a fundamental social change that is about to occur in labor and employment law similar to President Roosevelt’s New Deal. I refer to this as Obama’s Big Deal.

This Essay also reviews the historic relationship between the law and economic with respect to labor legislation. Additionally, this Essay reviews proposed labor and employment legislation that is likely to be enacted by the 111th Congress such as the Employee Free Choice Act, H.R. 1409, 111th Cong. (1st Sess. 2009), the Re-empowerment of Skilled and Professional Employees and Construction Tradeworkers Act (“RESPECT”), H.R. 1644, 110th Cong. (1st Sess. 2007), The Equal Remedies Act, H.R. 5129, 110th Cong. (2d Sess. 2008), Employment Non-Discrimination Act (“ENDA”), H.R. 3685, 110th Cong. (1st Sess. 2007).

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