Today’s News & Commentary — January 24, 2017

President Trump met with the leaders of several construction and building trade labor unions on Monday, according to Reuters.  This came after the President signed an executive order withdrawing the US from the Trans-Pacific Partnership.The New York Times offers some more detail on the meeting, which reportedly included the President offering reassurance of his commitment to major infrastructure spending.

On that note, Senate Democrats plan to introduce a $1 trillion infrastructure plan–and offer the President support if he backs it, according to the New York Times. Governors from across the country have expressed support for the plan, and also a desire for meaningful input and control over funding.

President Trump announced a broad hiring freeze for the federal government, restricting hiring for all new and existing positions except those those in the military, national security, and public safety. The move drew harsh criticism from federal labor union leaders. Max Stier argues in the Washington Post that the move will make the government less effective and potentially increase costs.

The SEIU has announced that Nicole Berner will become its general counsel beginning Feb. 1. Berner will take over for retiring General Counsel Judy Scott, who has held the role since 1997.