US congressmen try to stop railroad strike

US economy due to railroad strike will suffer damage of $ 2 billion per day

The U.S. House of Representatives has taken urgent action to prevent an impending nationwide railroad strike, the Associated Press reported Nov. 30.

Robert Koehler.  Strike.  1883

Robert Koehler. Strike. 1883

Congressmen passed a bill that would oblige companies and workers to abide by a proposed agreement that was reached in September but rejected by some of the 12 participating unions.

The bill was passed by 290 votes to 137 and is now heading to the Senate. If approved there, it will be signed by President Joe Biden, who urged the Senate to act quickly.

“Without action this week, railroads will begin to stop the movement of critical materials, there will be disruptions to our vehicle supply chains, our ability to get food to tables, and our ability to remove hazardous waste from refineries.”Biden said.

The business community, including the US Chamber of Commerce and the American Federation of Farm Bureaus, have warned that the rail shutdown would be a devastating blow to an economy that will lose $2 billion a day.

The bill provides for a compromise labor agreement brokered by the Biden administration that was eventually rejected by four of 12 unions representing some 115,000 major freight railroad employees. The unions have threatened to strike if an agreement is not reached by the December 9 deadline.

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