Townhall published an op-ed by ATR Federal Affairs Coordinator Rowan Saydlowski on Tuesday. The op-ed discusses President Biden’s handpicked nominee for Secretary of Labor, Julie Su, and the dangers she poses to worker freedom.
The piece begins by discussing administrative catastrophes during Su’s tenure as chief labor official in the state of California:
As the head of California’s Labor and Workforce Development Agency, Su oversaw widespread failures in the state’s unemployment insurance system. Under her watch, California distributed more than $11 billion in fraudulent claims, totaling 10 percent of all benefits paid out by the state during the COVID-19 pandemic. Estimates show that a further $19 billion in claims may have been improperly distributed.
The op-ed also highlights Su’s role as a key architect of California’s infamous Assembly Bill 5 (AB5), which forced many independent contractors to reclassify as W-2 employees:
Analyses of a forced shift from an independent contractor model to an employee model for app-based rideshare and delivery drivers in California found that the regulations could cause as much as a 59 percent reduction in trips, 90 percent reduction in drivers, and 110 percent increase in trip prices. Some freelancers were forced out of California entirely due to the new restrictions placed on their work.
Due to these damaging effects, AB5 was deeply unpopular among Californians, especially those it affected most directly, as noted in the op-ed:
Su’s AB5 was so unpopular that Californians in 2020 voted by a 17-point margin in favor of sweeping exemptions for app-based rideshare and delivery drivers, allowing them to remain as independent contractors. In surveys, three-quarters of these independent drivers in California said they support the exemptions.
If Su’s radical agenda is allowed to go national, millions of Americans could also see their tax bills increase. The op-ed cites a 2022 study to that effect:
A study commissioned by Americans for Tax Reform and Tholos Foundation last year found that if Su’s ABC test were applied on a nationwide basis, 56 percent of the independent contractors who would be forced into W-2 employment status would pay higher taxes. Ninety-six percent of those workers who will have a higher tax burden––about 7.5 million workers––make less than $400,000 per year, once again violating Biden’s pledge to not raise taxes on anyone earning less than that amount.
Finally, the piece concludes by drawing a parallel between Julie Su and previous failed Biden nominee for the Department of Labor, David Weil, who shared many of Su’s radical policy stances:
Weil’s nomination rightfully went down in flames due to his radical stances against free enterprise and entrepreneurship and in favor of California-style ABC tests. The Senate should reject Julie Su for the same reasons.
Click here to read the full op-ed.