Wal-Mart Defeats Maryland Law

Yesterday, a federal appeals court judge ruled in Wal-Mart’s favor over the state of Maryland, regarding the creation of the “Fair Share Health Care” law. The law, created last year, required employers of a certain size to pay at least 8% of its total payroll towards the health care of its employees. However, the law was so specifically designed that it only affected Wal-Mart, which was a major basis for the company’s lawsuit.

“Last year, the union leaders failed in 32 of the 33 states where they announced they would enact a so-called Fair Share Health Care bill,” said Catherine Smith, Interim Chair of Working Families for Wal-Mart, a company backed organization created by Wal-Mart to strengthen its public image. “In Maryland, the only state to enact the legislation, a Federal judge promptly struck it down as illegal. Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals agreed. We applaud the Court’s actions and are gratified that yet again this measure has been exposed as both illegal and bad public policy. On behalf of working families everywhere, we urge the union leaders’ to abandon these failed gimmicks and use their members’ dues to help pass meaningful reforms that expand affordable health coverage to all Americans.”

In New York, the Working Families Party has drafted the “Fair Share for Health Care” act, a bill similar to the Maryland bill though greater in scope. A push to pass the law last year failed, but party leaders have stated in the past that their own bill would be in better legal shape if it did pass. Read more about the legislation here.