The Dunlop Commission Report: Friends of Unions Baird, Charles W.

One of the first orders of business that President Clinton addressed upon taking office in 1993, was how to repay organized labor for its support during his election. Among other things, he appointed the first of three commissions charged with finding the best means for revising the nation's labor laws as they apply to private and public sector workers, to favor organized labor. The Commission on the Future of Worker/Management Relations, known as the Dunlop Commission, held its first meeting in April 1993.

One need look no further than the composition of the commission, chaired by former U.S. labor Secretary John Dunlop, who resigned his post in the Ford administration because the president opposed union-favored common situs picketing, to note its union bias. Other members of the panel include President Carter's Labor Secretary Ray Marshall, three pro-union labor economists and William Gould, who now chairs the National Labor Relations Board and has written extensively about his support of organized labor's agenda.

Implicit in the formation of this commission is the Clinton administration's assertion that, during the 1980s, Republican presidents encouraged union-management friction. The commission held meetings for a year and, in May 1994, released a preliminary report on its finding. It sought and received a six-month extension in order to complete its work but has since been forced to seek another, delaying until May 1995 publication of its final report. In "The Dunlop Commission Report: Friends of Unions," Dr. Charles W. Baird offers an analysis of the commission's preliminary report and insight into what its ultimate recommendations will be.