President Luis Guillermo Solís signed the lifting of the ban on Labor Procedure Reform at the same table where Social Guarantees were signed in 1943.  Photo courtesy of Casa Presidencial (Government House)
President Luis Guillermo Solís signed the lifting of the ban on Labor Procedure Reform at the same table where Social Guarantees were signed in 1943. Photo courtesy of Casa Presidencial (Government House)

QCOSTARICA POLITICS – The Partido Unidad Social Crisitiana (PUSC) eight legislators are nearly pleading with President Luis Guillermo Solis to let the labor reform bill vetoed by ex-President Laura Chinchilla die a peaceful death in Legislative Assembly archives. Solis has spent nearly two weeks in talks with PUSC lawmakers to get the 38 votes to pass the measure.

The leftist Frente Amplio (FA) party, by contrast, has been doing everything in its power to pass the bill into law without being assured that they have the votes. Most legal experts say that the Constitution dictates that the bill dies this Saturday but FA says that the President can get an extension of four months.

The reason President Chinchilla vetoed the bill is that it would allow legal strikes of vital services such as in hospitals and police while preventing the government from bringing in extra help to keep the services going. After feverish talks with PUSC and Partido Liberacion Naciona (PLN) party that oppose the measure, President Solis is nearly out of options.

With PUSC and PLN, the latter the largest single bloc in the congress, against it the bill appears dead. FA is hoping more time to bring pressure on the two main parties, along with the Movimiento Liberatrio (ML) party, to split the vote enough to gain a majority.

Intense negotiations with PLNparty broke down this week, despite the President’s most persuasive efforts. The delineation of the parties on the issue are very much on ideological lines, with the left of center Partido Accion Cuidadan (PAC) and FA, plus several smaller parties, siding with unions.

PUSC and the ML and now PLN agree with private enterprise in opposition to the bill. They fear it will give unions almost dictatorial power over the country. Whether, in fact, unions would hold the nation’s ill and public security hostage is not a given; but it is something they are unwilling to chance.

Article by iNews.co.cr; Photo from Casa Presidencial