WASHINGTON, D.C. — Less than a day after Al Franken was sworn-in as Minnesota’s junior U.S. senator, the Democrat announced that he was co-sponsoring his first bill — the Employee Free Choice Act, according to the National Journal.
“As of about a half an hour ago, I became the co-sponsor of my first piece of legislation in the Senate,” the National Journal reported that Franken told a Tuesday evening gathering at the AFL-CIO headquarters. “And it’s something called the Employee Free Choice Act.”
The Employee Free Choice Act, which would make it easier for workers to unionize, has become a divisive issue in Congress with lawmakers mostly splitting along party lines.
The bill has been stalled in the Senate because supporters have struggled to corral the needed 60 votes to overcome a filibuster. Franken, however, could now be pivotal in helping to move the legislation forward.
A member of four unions himself, Franken told the audience that “it is more than fair to say that if it hadn’t been for you, I wouldn’t have won,” according to the National Journal.
Then, joking about his slim 312-vote victory, Franken said, “Of course, you can say that about a lot of people.”