Tuesday, December 20, 2005

NY Transit Strike- Pataki's Press Conference

Apparently, the judge in Brooklyn is still hearing the case against the TWU's strike, so the fines of two days pay lost for each day of the strike have not been levied yet, but NY Gov. Pataki seemed confident. The drumbeats of his conference from remarks and responses:

1) It's up to the TWU and the MTA to work out their contract. He wouldn't discuss specifics.
2) The strike is illegal, wrong, and not only inflicts hardship upon New Yorkers but is a threat to public safety.
3) The MTA hasn't left the negotiating table and is ready to resume anytime. It was the TWU who left and who aren't negotiating in good faith. "Get back to the table." Ad infinitum.
4) Other state unions have worked for extended periods without contracts in order to preserve the public safety.
5) The TWU rejected the offer of mediation and/or arbitration.
6) The TWU needs to stop the illegal strike immediately and return to work.
7) The state will enforce the law. No union can be allowed to act illegally to endanger the city.

He certainly made a stronger law-and-order impression than Bloomberg earlier. However, without a ruling yet, it isn't clear what the state will do. Anything too heavy-handed will be bad, but I'm not too worried about jackbooted oppression of a union happening here.

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