House Committee on Education and Labor
U.S. House of Representatives

Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon
Ranking Member

Fiscally responsible reforms for students, workers and retirees.



Dear Colleague

February 2, 2009

74% of Voters Oppose the Employee Free Choice Act

Dear Colleague: 

The American people believe strongly in their right to a secret ballot, and are overwhelmingly opposed to legislation that would take away that right in the workplace. Such is the finding of a new national survey from McLaughlin & Associates that shows widespread public opposition to the misnamed Employee Free Choice Act, a bill that would offer workers anything but a free choice when deciding whether to join a particular union. 

Interestingly, the poll found equally strong support for the secret ballot among union households, demonstrating that this is not a question of pro- or anti-union sentiment, but rather the basic democratic right to vote freely and privately, without intimidation or public scrutiny. 

Earlier today, you may have seen a letter claiming that the American public supports the plan to take away the private ballot. We thought you might be interested in the results of another poll, which shows a very different result. For instance, when asked “If an election were held to decide whether workers would organize a union, which one of the following types of elections is the best way to protect the individual rights of workers?” an overwhelming 82% of voters agreed that the best way to protect workers’ rights was “Having a federally supervised secret ballot election where workers privately vote yes or no on whether to authorize union representation.” Importantly, an even higher 85% of members of union households said the same. 

Among the survey’s other findings:

  • Fully 86% of voters feel that workplace votes on unionizing should remain private, and only 8% believe that such votes should be public. An even higher 88% of union members believe that the process should be kept private.
  • Three-quarters (74%) of voters oppose the so-called Employee Free Choice Act. Opposition is equally high (74%) among union members

We hope you find this information useful as Congress prepares once again to debate the so-called Employee Free Choice Act



Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-CA) 


John Kline (R-MN) 


Tom Price, M.D. (R-GA)