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Funnyman Franken Fights for Justice in Defense Contracts

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The United States Senate (PDF) yesterday voted in overwhelming fashion, 68-30, to make it illegal for companies to include forced arbitration in employment contracts as part of their federal defense contracts.

Companies like Halliburton will now be denied federal defense contracts if they deny their employees their day in court when they are subjected to rape, assault, or a hostile work environment. This measure was introduced by freshman Senator Al Franken of Minnesota who debated fiercly on the Senate floor against Republican Jeff Sessions of Alabama. Ultimately, Franken’s arguments won the votes of a commanding majority of Senators, including both Senators from Michigan (Stabenow and Levin).

This change in the law will allow people like Jamie Leigh Jones to be able to try their cases in court just like any other citizen. Ms. Jones alleged that she was raped by multiple co-workers while serving in Iraq in 2005. She was unable to try her case in front of a judge and jury because her employment contract required her to submit her claims to binding arbitration. Ten Republican Senators (including every single female Republican Senator) voted in favor of the Amendment along with every single Democratic Senator.

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  1. Jerry says:
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    I think Al Franken deserves to be called “Senator” instead of “Funnyman”