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The Lockean Project

AB5 on a national level?

AB5 on a national level? — Monterey Herald – Oct. 22, 2020

A report on the CNBC website headlined, “Why millions of freelancers fear Biden presidency may put them out of work,” quotes a statement on the site of the Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, saying he would go national with the equivalent of California’s notorious AB-5 law.

According to the report, Biden supports the “Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act” which would force businesses and other hiring entities to turn freelancers into full-time employees with benefits including health insurance, vacation pay, overtime pay and other requirements. But because so few businesses can afford to do this (think Uber and Lyft) the careers of these freelancers would end.

Freelance writers and musicians among others in California saw their careers revived recently when AB-5 was modified. But just as we thought it was safe to go back to the keyboard, along comes Biden. It’s estimated that 59 million Americans work as freelancers or independent contractors. Many if not most would see their careers sidelined if Biden’s intent prevails, which it will if he wins the presidency and the Democrats control all of Congress.

–Doug Gamble, Carmel