Tentative Deal Reached to Avoid US Railroad Strike

Photo: Zuma Press [via The Wall Street Journal]

The Facts

  • US freight railroads and union leaders on Thursday reached a tentative labor agreement — brokered by Biden's administration — to avoid a national strike that would've damaged large parts of the economy.

  • The deal includes a 24% pay raise for thousands of rail workers over the next five years, stretching back to 2020, as well as an additional vacation day, and unpaid time off for medical appointments without penalty.

The Spin

Democratic narrative

This is a huge win for Biden not only because he avoided a disastrous strike, but also because it reinforced his commitment to the trade unions who are huge supporters of Democrats and will be vital to victories in this fall’s midterm elections. Once ratified, this deal will give Democrats another Biden accomplishment to boast about on the campaign trail.

Republican narrative

Biden shouldn’t be celebrating this deal, which was in part caused by the inflation crisis he seemingly doesn’t know how to end. Railroad unions needed higher wages because the cost of living has skyrocketed, but giving workers more money will only keep the US in a wage-price spiral. This isn't a winning campaign topic.

Political split



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