July 15, 2024
Facts Concerning Union Members and Project 2025

By John Davis Region 8 Webmaster

There is a lot of discussion around Project 2025, what it is and what it says. As union members, the plans outlined in Project 2025 should concern us all. It calls for draconian actions that would make the American Dream much harder to achieve for working class Americans.

Project 2025 is a plan for another potential Donald Trump presidency. The plan was published by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank founded in 1973. A group of business men, including Joseph Coors, of the Coors Beer Company. The group has since that time pushed business first proposals, anti worker legislation and policies that benefit the wealthy. The Heritage Foundation has continued to be a major player in policy decisions for Republican Administrations since Ronald Reagan.

Project 2025 is a 900+ page document outlining plans for dismantling the Constitution, rolling back all regulatory function of the government, changes to Social Security and Medicare, attack on basic human and civil rights, eliminate environmental protections and such.

One of the big changes proposed by Project 2025 is to break down the three branches of government, executive, legislative and judicial. This would remove checks and balances that were put in place by our founding fathers almost 250 years. Power would be concentrated at the top, essentially transitioning the position of president to a king or dictator.

All government positions would be made available to replacement with loyalist rather than qualified personnel. Most federal employees are represented by a union and are protected by a collective bargaining agreement. The plan would make it illegal for unions to represent many federal employees and would throw out their legally negotiated contract.

The proposal calls for making Medicare Advantage the default Medicare program. Medicare Advantage is a commercial policy the government pays for. Traditional Medicare is administered by the government with the same care costing 20% less than its Medicare Advantage counterparts. The additional tax dollars Medicare Advantage cost would be diverted to the pockets of insurance companies, eating up budgeted money for senior care.

The proposal recommends raising the retirement age to 70, meaning that future Social Security beneficiaries would not be able to draw their Social Security until they reached 70 years old. People who actually work for a living cant continue to do most manual labor jobs that late in life. Of the national debt, the largest portion, 9% or 2.7 trillion dollars, are treasury bonds owed to Social Security. Social Security is a pay as you go system, where current enrollees pay for those currently receiving benefits. There are more active workers than there are retirees, so since the beginning more was paid into Social Security than gets paid out. The result is the Social Security Surplus, to see the program through the retirement of the “baby boomers” the largest group of retirees in the system. The problem is through the years the government has “borrowed” money from the surplus to pay for other programs. For example, President Bush used over $700,000,000 of the Social Security Surplus on the Iraqi War. Continued tax cuts to the wealthy make it harder for the government to repay the money owed to Social Security.

Project 2025 calls for overhauling the United States Tax Codes. Currently there are seven tax rates, 10%, 12%, 22%, 24%, 32%, 35% and 37%. Document 2025 calls for going to just two tax rates, 15% and 30%. This essentially would shift more taxes from the wealthy to the working class and those in poverty. Studies show the average middle class family making $100,000 a year would see an increase of $2600 a year under this proposal. It also calls for the elimination of many deductions such as the childcare credit. That alone would cost working class families another $6000 in year taxes. In contrast, the proposal would cut taxes on a married couple making $5,000,000 a year by $325,000.

Project 2025 proposes sweeping changes to public education. Currently the Federal Government provides Title One funds to schools whose students meet a certain poverty rate. These funds help provide additional resources such as lower-class size and instructional aides, to provide help to students who lack resources at home. One of the educational proposals in Document 2025 suggest taking that money and giving it to states to use for their “voucher” school programs. Voucher Programs take public funds and use them to cover the cost of private schools for those who choose to attend them. Other proposals include cutting Federal Headstart Programs which many of our members use to provide PreK education for those four or younger. The proposal also requires public high school students to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery; this to improve recruiter “access” to candidates. Private schools would receive even more federal money, but their students would not be required to take the armed forces entry test. Federal lunch programs would be drastically reduced as well.

Project 2025 proposes an alternative to unions called “employee involvement organizations”, or company unions. The idea is to erode the ability of workers to organize limiting their collective power.¬† In 2023, union election victories broke 70% for the first time in 15 years. Unions today have a more favorable public rating than in many years. Project 2025 wants to stop this progress by pushing employee organizations that have no bargaining power in the workplace.

These are just a few of many things contained in the 900+ page document, which essentially rolls back 100 years of gains for working Americans. Heritage Foundation President Kevin Roberts recently stated “the country is in the midst of a “second American Revolution” that will be bloodless “if the left allows it to be.” This open threat to the working class should concern every one of us. These plans are real and each one represent a direct threat to the way of life union members have fought so hard to win. UAW President Walter Reuther stated many times “There’s a direct relationship between the ballot box and the bread box, and what the union fights for and wins at the bargaining table can be taken away in the legislative halls.” These threats are real and should be taken seriously. Before you support any candidate for any office, find out where they stand with Project 2025.

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

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