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Michael Layman is Manager of Employment and Labor Policy at SHRM. Michael promotes SHRM's views on employment, labor relations, and civil rights legislation with House and Senate offices and the Administration. Michael is on Twitter at @SHRMLayman .

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Michael Layman


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Articles by Michael Layman

Most of us assumed President Obama’s re-election in November 2012 was the final out in the game of repealing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). After all, achieving universal health care reform was the president’s domestic policy home run, and the Obama Administration was not about to allow major changes to PPACA in its final four years in office.
But, (in keeping with the early baseball theme here) as the great American philosopher Yogi Berra said, “It ain’t over ‘till it’s over.”
July 25, 2013

Election 2012 is over. It could be weeks until you hear anyone “approve this message” again. That’s the good news.

The ominous news is that the fiscal cliff is dead ahead. Both the short- and long-term fates of the economy may be altered by what Congress does in the coming months.

“Fiscal cliff” was first coined by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. It refers to the combination of automatic tax increases and spending reductions that will occur on or around Jan. 2, 2013, if Congress does nothing.

November 7, 2012

At the iconic ending of the 1991 film “Thelma & Louise,” Geena Davis’s character Thelma says “Let’s not get caught. Let’s keep going!” And with a smile, Louise (Susan Sarandon) steps on the gas pedal of their convertible and they go careening off the cliff to their doom.

If the Federal government’s spendthrift ways keep going full-throttle like Thelma & Louise’s car, then on Jan. 2, 2013, a sequestration order could take effect that would potentially send the nation off the “fiscal cliff.”

August 2, 2012

Who could possibly be opposed to paycheck fairness? That’s the question some may ask as the Senate likely will consider the “Paycheck Fairness Act” in early June to further highlight the election year pursuit of the women’s vote. The legislation is the best idea some in Congress have to address the gap between men’s and women’s earnings.

May 29, 2012

Since the demise of the Employee Free Choice Act (or “card check bill”) following the 2010 midterm election, the Obama Administration has increasingly pushed labor-management relations policy through the executive branch. Throughout 2011, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued significant case decisions and substantive regulations.

March 6, 2012
Social media sites Wikipedia and Google held a blackout day on Wednesday, January 18, 2012 to highlight their opposition to the "Stop Online Piracy Act" (SOPA) and the "Protect Intellectual Property Act" (PIPA) bills in Congress. Wikipedia claimed that over 162 million people saw the blackout message on its website. One day later on January 19, the unofficial vote ledger switched from 80 members of Congress supporting SOPA/PIPA and 31 opposing to 65 supporting and 101 opposing it. This was a net loss of 85 votes for the SOPA/PIPA advocates in only one day!
January 23, 2012