At a George-Soros funded symposium on prison labor, Alan Krueger, Obama’s choice to head up his Council of Economic Advisers, advocated for unions for prisoners:
Krueger …. supported the Fair Labor Standards Act and Occupational Safety and Health coverage for inmates, as well as the right to form or belong to unions. (Source: Corrections Today 10/1/99)
Krueger also supported paying minimum wage and overtime to prisoners. It would seem that requiring the payment of wages and allowing unions to represent prisoners would interfere with the main purpose of a prison sentence: reforming criminals and giving them the life skills to prepare them for release.
Bill Wilson, President of Americans for Limited Government, said of Obama’s pick to head up the Council of Economic Advisers, “In light of his refusal to condemn the extremist remarks of Teamsters’ boss Jimmy Hoffa, promising to ‘take out’ the tea party, it is deeply disturbing that Barack Obama would nominate someone who has taken the radical position of advocating for the unionization of prisoners. This is the man that is supposed to turn our broken economy around?”
It’s unclear why Krueger would think that union organizing and membership are such fundamental rights that they should be extended to those who are in prison.