Norquist Letter on “Future of Work” Subcommittee Hearing

Today Americans for Tax Reform president Grover Norquist sent the following letter to the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce, in advance of Wednesday’s subcommittee hearing:

[Click here for PDF version of letter]

October 22, 2019
U.S. House Committee on Education and Workforce
2176 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Re: “The Future of Work: Preserving Worker Protections in the Modern Economy” Joint Subcommittee Hearing on October 23, 2019

Dear Committee Members:

Over 10 million Americans choose to work as independent contractors, which provides them the flexibility to be their own boss. But some politicians want to force these Americans to have a boss.

The millions of Americans who work as independent contractors are self-employed. They work for themselves. They are not an employee. They do not want to be an employee. They’ve chosen this level of independence. It should not be taken away from them.

With the passage of California’s Assembly Bill 5 and the U.S. House introduction of the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, please keep in mind how harmful these bills are to American workers and the economy.

Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) strongly opposes using California’s ABC test to limit who can be an independent contractor.

Americans should have the freedom to choose whether they want to be an independent contractor or not. The only “test” anyone should have to pass to be an independent contractor is to answer the question, “Do you choose to be an independent contractor?”

The purpose of redefining the term independent contractor actually seems to be more about empowering labor unions over workers. California Governor Gavin Newsom confirmed this in his signing statement on AB5:

“Assembly Bill 5 is an important step. A next step is creating pathways for more workers to form a union, collectively bargain to earn more, and have a stronger voice at work – all while preserving flexibility and innovation.”

On September 16, Americans for Tax Reform led a coalition letter to Congress with more than 60 groups and activists opposing the PRO Act. One of the many reasons these groups and activists opposed the PRO Act was because of the provision in the bill codifying California’s ABC test.

Because it would empower labor unions at the expense of American workers, Americans for Tax Reform opposes any attempt to codify California’s ABC test.


Grover G. Norquist

President, Americans for Tax Reform

[Click here for PDF version of letter]