What Will the Sick Leave Denial Backlash Look Like?

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Passing local earned sick days laws, in addition to helping real people, has always been part of a larger strategy to build support for a state earned sick days law.

Business flight resulting from local business taxes and regulations are generally pretty overblown (big exception is Philadelphia’s local tax mix), but you usually want to harmonize public policies like earned sick days across the largest possible land area. The likelihood of a business moving just outside of Pittsburgh or Easton to avoid these regs is higher than the likelihood they’ll move outside the state of Pennsylvania.

So if PA Republicans give you a snot burger for Christmas, what does the political backlash to that look like?

My take is that’s just going to push the Democratic candidates for Governor, and for lower seats, to take up the mantle of a statewide earned sick days bill. Currently there’s not a ton of energy around that as a major campaign theme for anybody, but we’re getting into the real campaign season now, and this is an issue that polls very well for the Democrats.

I think Republicans will come to regret pushing this ALEC bill now, because the decently good chance that they’ll be out of power in two of the three branches of PA state government in 2015 makes it more likely we end up with a statewide earned sick days bill, rather than no more local sick days laws.


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