Who is not aware that the natural gas industry gave tons of campaign cash to elected officials in PA? Very few, as the media loved to tell that story over and over.
But where are the stories on how much organized labor gave to elected officials with an expectation for a return on their "investments"? Haven't seen one yet; but the payoff for organized labor's campaign cash may come as soon as Monday, November 15, 2010.
How much did the unions "invest"?
$866,990 in the 2010 election cycle alone, according to the PA Department of State. But that's just from three government employee unions (PSEA, AFSCME, and SEIU), and only the tip of the union iceberg of campaign cash.
PSEA/AFSCME/SEIU gave a total of $755,370 in 2010 to elect Democrats to the House of Representatives—$601,850 directly to Democrat candidates and another $153,520 to the House Democratic Campaign Committee (HDCC).
* The Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) gave over a half-million ($530,000) to House Democrat candidates, including $123,000 to HDCC, in 2010.
* The American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) gave $87,570 to House Democrat candidate, including to $12,020 to HDCC.
* The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) gave $95,900 to House Democrat candidates, including $18,500 to HDCC.
PSEA, AFSCME and SEIU State PAC Contributions in 2010
Pennsylvania House $755,370 $60,500
Pennsylvania Senate $67,750 $46,000
PA Governor $658,000 $0
Total $1,481,120 $106,500
Does not include Main Street Values PAC contributions
What do the government unions want for their "investment"?
PSEA/AFSCME/SEIU expect the House Democrats to pass HB2497, the Union Pension Bailout Bill, while they still have the power to do so. Gov. Ed Rendell's days are numbered and this is the last chance to thwart real pension reform.
That's why the House Democrats have called the House back in for a lame-duck voting session, which is clearly against the will of the people (82% of Pennsylvanians oppose lame-duck voting and 38 states prohibit it).
The unions are spending lots of time and money trying to push this through in the 11th hour, 59th minute of the Rendell administration. HB 2497 is being touted by the unions as "saving" the taxpayers $3 billion (over 30 years) by marginally tinkering with future defined benefit pension plans for teachers, state workers, legislators and judges. But what they don't tell you is that these "savings" only come from NOT paying the pension bills and then forcing our kids and grandkids to pick up the tab.
HB 2497 doesn't save money any more than not paying your mortgage or credit card bill "saves" you money. Yet the unions have no problem lying to their members and getting them to lobby elected officials with half-truths and false information.
Get the facts on HB 2497, then call your State House member with the 13 Reasons to Oppose HB 2497. They are getting bombarded by greedy union bosses who are using teachers as pawns.