Cloture votes suck!!  

But we also now know where all the Republicans stand, against working Americans.

What's worse is that some how the immigration bill is coming up for a vote and Dems are helping to push this.

I want to be really clear about this. Guest Worker Passes create a PERMANENT UNDER CLASS. If you want to know what a guest worker pass looks like, ask women working in Kuwait, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Lebanon.

Regarding remuneration, the average wages per month in US dollars of domestic workers in Lebanon represented between $100 to $300 on average, and $150 to $200 for those in the UAE. However, not all domestic workers in the same country earn the same pay as salaries depend on the workers' origin country, language skills, and education. For instance, most Filipina domestic workers, who tend to speak English and be relatively educated, reported receiving higher wages than Sri Lankan and Ethiopian nationals.

Domestic workers' average number of working hours per week — 101 to 108 hours — in the four studies was high by international standards. Domestic workers' monthly time-off averaged between zero and two days off per month. All women interviewed working in households in the UAE reported not having a single day off in a given month. In Lebanon, Kuwait, and Bahrain, women migrant domestic workers reported having one to two days off a month on average.

On work-related problems, domestic workers most frequently cited the presence of physical (including sexual), psychological and verbal abuse; over 50 percent of those surveyed in Kuwait reported this concern. Most workers mentioned vulnerability to sexual abuse by their male employers, who are often also their visa sponsors, as well as by the sponsors' sons or other men visiting the home where they work. The situation in Bahrain and the UAE was also similar.

Women in Ethiopia, Sri Lanka and the Philipines are recruited for these domestic positions. They are no immigrants, they are guest workers. And when they try to leave their employment situation, well, let's just say it isn't good:

Running away from the employer's household is illegal and punishable in all four countries studied. Only Lebanon provides domestic workers with the option of finding a new sponsor. In Bahrain, Kuwait, and the UAE, the police will search for the worker, and the local newspaper will publish her photograph. Any person who hides or protects a runaway domestic worker is also considered a criminal.

When found, the worker is imprisoned and then deported, though she may need to pay her employer in order to retrieve her passport, and she will likely never receive salaries covering the period worked in those cases where the employers withhold wages; without her passport, she cannot be sent or travel home. Once in the custody of police or other authorities, some runaway domestic workers have reported being subjected to inhumane treatment.

Besides placing women in untenible positions, these women are treated liks slaves.

So, let's take a trip down guest worker lane take a look at the meat packing industry.

Today, America's meat industry is the nation's largest agricultural sector and sales of meat and poultry exceed $100 billion a year in the U.S. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the animal slaughtering and processing industry employed a total of 506,000 people at the close of 2005. The average earnings of production workers that year was $11.47 an hour, about 30 percent less than the average wage for all manufacturing jobs in the U.S. According to REAP, a union-affiliated group, union membership among meat packing employees has plunged from 80 percent in 1980 to less than 50 percent today.

The face of the average meatpacking plant worker has also changed. Over the past two decades, the number of immigrant laborers in meat packing plants—and in the Midwestern areas in which they are primarily located—has increased dramatically. According to the USDA, the percentage of Hispanic meat-processing workers rose from less than 10 percent in 1980 to nearly 30 percent in 2000.

We all have to do a better job making it possible for workers to organize. So that wages don't DECREASE the way they have in the meat packing industry.

Oh, an in case you were wondering, even Human Rights Watch studied the meat packing industry problem. You can even see the progress UFCW has made at Smithfield to date. EFCA would have finally made it possible for workers who want a union to have a union based on putting their names on cards.

I look forward to this legislation finally passing. Sherrod Brown, D-OH, has promised to keep bringing it up. I do hope he joins Bernie Sanders in opposing the new immigration bill. It's bad for workers. It's bad for everyone.

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