With help from Ian Kullgren
TRUMP BETS ON KOBACH: Kansas Secretary of State and immigration hard-liner Kris Kobach picked up President Donald Trump’s endorsement heading into today’s Kansas gubernatorial primary election, POLITICO’s Daniel Strauss reports.
Story Continued Below
“Kris Kobach, a strong and early supporter of mine, is running for Governor of the Great State of Kansas,” Trump tweeted. “He is a fantastic guy who loves his State and our Country – he will be a GREAT Governor and has my full & total Endorsement! Strong on Crime, Border & Military. VOTE TUESDAY!”
Kobach previously led Trump’s ill-fated voter fraud commission, which launched after the president, without evidence, argued that millions of people “voted illegally” for Hillary Clinton (the president disbanded the commission in January). Kobach now faces off in a primary against Republican incumbent Gov. Jeff Colyer, who became governor in January when Sam Brownback was confirmed to an ambassador post.
“White House aides had long been pushing for Trump not to endorse Kobach,” Strauss writes, “fearful that his nomination could make the general election more competitive and potentially threaten Republican prospects in several congressional races.” But Kobach shares Trump’s hawkish views when it comes to immigration — and limited polling in the primary shows a virtual tie. More here.
GOOD MORNING! It’s Tuesday, Aug. 7, and this is Morning Shift, POLITICO’s daily tipsheet on employment and immigration policy. Send tips, exclusives, and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Twitter at @tedhesson, @IanKullgren and @TimothyNoah1.
LABOR SETS SIGHTS ON MISSOURI: The state’s voters will decide today whether to approve or reject a so-called right to work law. The measure — signed into law by Republican Gov. Eric Greitens in 2017 — bans mandatory union fees demanded of non-members to cover their share of collective bargaining costs.
“Labor groups collected more than 300,000 signatures to put the issue on the ballot, more than the 120,000 required,” Kris Maher and Eric Morath report in The Wall Street Journal. “If the ballot initiative succeeds, it would be the first time a right-to-work law is overturned by popular vote, according the AFL-CIO,” More here.
DOJ SIGNALS DACA APPEAL: The Trump administration will appeal a federal judge’s order to restart the DACA program in full, according to a notice filed Monday evening. U.S. District Judge John Bates on Friday said DACA should be restored and accept new applications, but delayed the effective date of the decision until Aug. 23 to allow time for an appeal. Attorney General Jeff Sessions blasted the judge’s decision in a statement Monday, saying the Obama administration “violated its duty to enforce our immigration laws” when it created DACA. Read the notice to appeal here.
Recommended read: “How Trump radicalized ICE,” by Franklin Foer in the Atlantic. Find it here.
REPORT: FRANCHISE DECISION HURT HOTELS: A new study by the right-leaning American Action Forum found that growth in the hotel industry slowed after the NLRB’s 2015 Browning-Ferris decision, which made it easier to classify a business as jointly liable for labor violations committed by its franchisees and contractors. The annual franchise employment rate in hotels fell by 1.4 percentage points after the decision, according to the report. Real wages and real weekly earnings within the industry plateaued, and growth in total wage earnings declined by 3.9 percentage points, the study found.
However, researchers added a caveat: “While the results from 2016 are startling, they are based on only one year of data since the 2015 joint employer ruling, and franchise hotels may have simply had an off year,” the report said. “Thus, to determine whether the broadened joint employer standard could be playing a role in these trends, it is important to continue tracking the hotel industry’s labor market over time.”
The current Republican-controlled NLRB said in May it would write a rule to reverse Browning-Ferris. Separately, the House passed a bill, H.R. 3441 (115), to permanently reverse the decision, but it’s gone nowhere in the Senate. More here.
NLRB REAFFIRMS ALJ APPOINTMENTS: The NLRB on Monday unanimously ruled that its process for appointing administrative law judges falls in line with a recent Supreme Court decision on the subject. In its Lucia v. SEC decision in June, the court found that the Securities and Exchange Commission’s process for appointing administrative law judges was unconstitutional because commission staff — instead of its leaders — were appointing them. But the NLRB, in rejecting a challenge by WestRock Services, Inc., said its process is different because the board itself picks the ALJs, not agency staff, which constitutes an agency head under the appointments clause of the Constitution. Read the decision here.
CWA SLAMS AT&T OVER JOB CUTS: AT&T workers on Monday launched a “broken promises” tour to shame the company over job cuts when they said it promised job creation. The workers, represented by the Communications Workers of America, will focus on AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson’s 2017 statement that the company would create 7,000 “good jobs for the middle class” and devote $1 billion to capital expenditures with savings from Republicans’ tax reform law. CWA contends the company has cut 7,000 jobs since the tax cuts went into effect.
An AT&T spokesman denied Stephenson promised to create jobs. “For months, the CWA has been making inaccurate and misleading statements regarding a non-existent ‘promise’ around tax reform and jobs,” said spokesman Marty Richter. “What was said is that AT&T plans to invest an additional $1 billion in the U.S. this year as a result of tax reform, and that research shows that every $1 billion in capital invested in the telecom industry creates about 7,000 good-paying jobs for American workers, across the broader economy.”
Stephenson said in May 2017 that AT&T would use savings from a corporate tax cut to boost investment and add jobs. “I know exactly what AT&T would do,” Stephenson said on CNBC. “We would invest more. … The arithmetic for us is simple. Every billion dollars of additional investment that we make is 7,000 additional jobs we have to put on to put that capital into the ground or on cell towers and so forth. … These are high-paying really good jobs with great benefits.”
KAVANAUGH’S TIES TO JUDGE IN SCANDAL UNDER SCRUTINY: “Senate Democrats are gearing up to press Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on his decades-long relationship with former Judge Alex Kozinski, who was forced into retirement last year by a mounting sexual harassment scandal,” POLITICO’s Elana Schor reports.
“It’s not just what, if anything, Kavanaugh saw during his time as a Kozinski clerk in the early 1990s that’s on Democratic minds,” writes Schor. “They also want to know how [Trump’s] high court pick would address the judiciary’s ongoing internal reckoning with sexual misconduct that was sparked by Kozinski.” More here.
STEELWORKERS STEP UP THEIR MIDTERM EFFORTS: “The League of Conservation Voters and United Steelworkers are teaming up for a $3.1 million investment in voter mobilization in four battleground Senate races, the groups announced [Monday],” Campaign Pro’s James Arkin reports. “The money will go to Arizona and Nevada — Democrats’ two best opportunities to flip Senate seats this cycle — as well as Montana and Ohio, two races featuring Democratic incumbents.” More here.
NOOYI TO DEPART PEPSICO: “Indra Nooyi, PepsiCo’s first female chief executive, is stepping down after 12 years at the helm of the food-and-beverage giant,” Rachel Siegel and Jena McGregor report in The Washington Post. “She is also one of the few minority female leaders of a major corporation, and her departure focuses attention on the absence of women — particularly women of color — in some of the United States’ most high-profile corporate roles.” More here.
EGG FARM, DOJ REACH SETTLEMENT OVER HARASSMENT: DOJ reached a settlement with an Indiana egg farm accused of discriminating against immigrant workers when checking their work authorization, the department announced Monday. Rose Acre Farms required non-citizens to prove their work authorization with a permanent resident card or employment authorization document but did not subject U.S. citizens to the same checks. The farm agreed to pay a $70,000 civil penalty, train its employees and undergo monitoring for two years.
— “Two-week waiting line at Nogales port turns to no wait for asylum seekers,” from the Arizona Republic
— Report: “Stepped up illegal-entry prosecutions reduce those for other crimes,” from the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse
— “The challenges of enforcing Wall Street’s ‘Weinstein clauses,’” from The Washington Post
— “Stores, factories lead this year’s unexpected hiring boom,” from The Wall Street Journal
THAT’S ALL FOR MORNING SHIFT.