The House of Representatives approved legislation to implement neutrally arbitrated tentative agreements reached with the remaining unions and avert a nationwide rail strike.
On the heels of the vote, the House then narrowly passed a partisan resolution to insert itself between the parties undermining longstanding bargaining principles and compromising future negotiations not just for the freight rail industry but Amtrak and the airlines as well.
Freight railroads are calling on the Senate to swiftly implement the tentative agreements and reject the Sanders-led push to add terms to the contract beyond the scope of the Biden PEB recommendations.
“Today’s strong House vote to follow the clear majority pattern and implement remaining tentative agreements clearly underscores the overwhelming bipartisan support for Congress to heed President Biden’s call and quickly avert an economically destructive national rail shutdown without modification or delay,” said AAR President & CEO Ian Jefferies. “The Senate must now act quickly to implement the historic deals reached at the bargaining table and already ratified by eight of twelve unions. Unless Congress wants to become the de facto endgame for future negotiations, any effort to put its thumb on the bargaining scale to artificially advantage either party, or otherwise obstruct a swift resolution, would be wholly irresponsible, and risk a timely outcome to avoid significant economic harm.”