Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) is backing American workers employed at Amazon’s Bessemer, Alabama, warehouse who are currently voting on whether they want to unionize against the wishes of the multinational corporation’s billionaire executives.
Last month, the roughly 5,800 Americans employed at the Bessemer Amazon warehouse were sent ballots so they could vote on unionization. If the majority of workers vote in support of unionization, they will be the first Amazon union in the United States and will join the Retail, Wholesale, and Department Store Union (RWDSU).
As Breitbart News has reported, Amazon executives have fought the unionization vote at nearly every turn. In January, they filed an appeal opposing mail-in voting for the unionization vote in an effort to slow the process.
In an op-ed for USA Today on Friday, Rubio slammed Amazon for “waging a culture war against working-class values” and announced his support for the warehouse’s workers looking to unionize.
For the past several years, Amazon has waged a war against working-class values. The Silicon Valley titan uses anticompetitive strategies to crush small businesses, bans conservative books and blocks traditional charities from participating in its AmazonSmile program. Not surprisingly, it has also bowed to China’s censorship demands. [Emphasis added]
Here’s my standard: When the conflict is between working Americans and a company whose leadership has decided to wage culture war against working-class values, the choice is easy — I support the workers. And that’s why I stand with those at Amazon’s Bessemer warehouse today. [Emphasis added]
Uniquely malicious corporate behavior like Amazon’s justifies a more adversarial approach to labor relations. It is no fault of Amazon’s workers if they feel the only option available to protect themselves against bad faith is to form a union. Today it might be workplace conditions, but tomorrow it might be a requirement that the workers embrace management’s latest “woke” human resources fad. [Emphasis added]
Amazon’s corporate practices were most recently in the news after its Amazon Prime streaming service dropped a documentary film about U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, the only black American currently serving on the court, during Black History Month.
A report by House Democrats on monopolies revealed that Amazon “accounts for over half of all print book sales and over 80 percent of e-book sales” and “reportedly controls about 65 percent to 70 percent of all U.S. online marketplace sales.”
This month, reports indicated that Amazon is refusing to sell ebooks and audiobooks it publishes through its in-house publishing arms to U.S. libraries as executives want library patrons to buy their books instead of borrowing them as generations of Americans have.
In the midst of economic lockdowns that have crippled small and medium-sized businesses, Amazon has profited billions and made 2020 the corporation’s most profitable year. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, similarly, boosted his fortune by 60 percent since March 2020.
Despite Amazon’s broad corporate power in the market, the corporation has skated by for years without paying federal income taxes. In 2020, the corporation paid federal income taxes for the first time since 2016. The amount paid by Amazon was just $162 million last year, a fraction of its 2019 $13.9 billion pre-tax reported income. For context, Amazon paid in federal income taxes just 1.2% of its pre-tax reported income last year.
The Bessemer unionization vote is expected to conclude sometime after March 29. Since the effort began, RWDSU union representatives say there have been more than 1,000 Amazon workers who have inquired about unionizing.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter here.