Congress expected to vote on rail strike resolution bill on Wednesday

Yahoo Finance labor reporter Dani Romero outlines House Speaker Pelosi's comments on the rail strike bill, while detailing which labor unions have ratified or rejected the deal offered by freight operators.

Video Transcript

DAVE BRIGGS: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says the House will take up legislation on Wednesday to address a possible rail strike. President Biden urging lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to prevent the strike. The president saying in a statement, quote, "A rail shutdown would devastate our economy." Yahoo Finance's Dani Romero joins us now with the details. Dani, where are we headed?

DANI ROMERO: Well, there's a lot at stake here, both for our economy, but also for the administration. We heard today from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi calling on Congress to act. She said that this legislation, that there could be a bill on the floor as early as tomorrow morning, 9 o'clock in the morning. She said that the legislation would include both the original agreement, but also would include some additional benefits that were gained.

But she also hinted, though, that this bill does not have something that she would have wanted to see. And that is the paid sick leave. That is something that unions have been calling on. Their biggest sticking points really revolve around quality of life, particularly around sick leave. An example that was given to me by a union member was the fact that an example is, let's say your child gets sick, and you need to stay home to stay with your child. That is something they are pressing on right now to be paid for.

And four out of the 12 unions have rejected the deal, but three out of the four unions, excuse me, have said that if a deal is not reached, then they will go on strike December 9. Now, if one strike-- if one union strikes, then all 12 of them will honor the picket line and will strike as well. But the bright side, if there is one, if there is a strike, and-- is that Congress is still in session. So it essentially would be short-lived because Congress would be able to intervene.

But I just got off the phone with a union representative who said that Biden's statement actually hinted that the unions could get what they want. And that is the paid sick leave. And here's a line from that real quick. No one should have to choose between their job and their health or the health of their children. I have pressed legislation and proposals to advance the cause of paid leave in my two years in office and will continue to do so. So there is some optimism that this could go in favor for the unions. Dave.

DAVE BRIGGS: Of course, there is a lot of gray between those two sides. Now correct me if I'm wrong, real quick. No paid sick days under the tentative deal. The unions want 15? Is that correct?

DANI ROMERO: It's still unclear because you have four unions, four separate unions--

DAVE BRIGGS: Good point.

DANI ROMERO: --that want different things. So it goes back and forth. But again, another sticking point to this, too, is that the administration runs the risk of losing support. If they really have a heavy hand in this, they could use those unions-- they could lose those union workers' support. And, you know, Biden has said that he is pro union so that is on the table as well.

DAVE BRIGGS: He has a track record of being pro-union for a long time. Dani Romero, good stuff. Thank you.