Notes from the Advocacy Underground

After years of working on Republican campaigns, Danny Diaz is launching a private firm this year.


After years of working on Republican campaigns, Danny Diaz is launching a private firm this year. He just doesn’t want to talk about it. “I do my job as opposed to talking about how I got my job,” Diaz tells Politics. Right now that job is centered on the fight against the Employee Free Choice Act, one of this year’s most contentious pieces of legislation. It’s a battleground for Big Business and Big Labor—each one perceived from across the aisle as the most brutal lobby in politics. As allegations of subterfuge fly, the players try to keep their campaigns under the radar, but make no mistake: Many of the industry’s top players are focusing their attention this year not on elections but on legislative battles like EFCA. The bill mandates the formation of a union if a majority of workers sign authorization cards. Critics fear that will lead to union coercion by doing away with the current “secret ballot,” which unions say is critical for their survival. Through the beginning of April, media buys for and against the bill had already topped $9.4 million. “This is the biggest mobilization I’ve seen for any legislation, ever,” says Tim Waters, a political director for United Steelworkers. The bill has been introduced every session since 2003, but until now its prospects for passage were slim.READ MORE in the May issue.


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