Dem Senate candidate Michelle Nunn is up with a new ad that contains footage of GOPer David Perdue telling a local TV station that he is “proud” of his outsourcing past. This footage could prove especially potent in a state with such high unemployment, but Nunn trails Perdue by nearly four points in the polling average, which is a lot of ground to make up.
— Greg Sargent, The Washington Post, this morning
Millions of Americans have lousy credit. Some lost their jobs in the 2008 financial crisis and survived on credit cards. Some left college buried in loans. Others live in minority neighborhoods that are preyed upon by unscrupulous lenders. Still others had the bad luck to be sick and uninsured. Does membership in the undiscriminating club of beleaguered borrowers inevitably make someone a risky hire or an unreliable employee? Hardly. Does it justify the increasingly common practice of employers using credit checks to reject prospective hires? No.
A bill banning employment discrimination based on someone’s credit history has been offered in the New York City Council by Brad Lander, who says the misuse of credit reports in hiring is based on a damaging perception, disproved by research, that bad credit risks make bad employees. He points to studies that show no correlation between damaged credit and job performance or the likelihood of committing fraud. Mr. Lander is not the first lawmaker to reach this conclusion; similar legislation has passed in at least 10 states and was introduced in Congress by Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.
The City Council bill has wide support, but Mr. Lander fears it may be weakened by the addition of exceptions and loopholes for certain industries or occupations, as has been done in some states. That would undermine its ability to combat this form of discrimination.
… The worst of the recession is behind us, but the damage lives on for millions of Americans who are hobbled by bad credit. The injury is made worse when companies rely on stereotypes and misinformation to exclude deserving workers from the job market.
— Bad Credit? Big Problem, Editorial Board, New York Times, Oct. 5
I wonder whether Michelle Nunn might consider mentioning Warren’s bill, in her ads or campaign appearances. Or in both!
This might even encourage, say, Alison Lundergan Grimes, Mark Pryor, Mark Udall, Mark Begich, Bruce Braley, and even Mary Landrieu, to mention it, too. I mean, y’never know.
Speaking of Braley, though, he knocked it* out of the park, finally, at last weekend’s debate. And he did it with discussion of policy—in several-sentence explanations! And with really meaningful mantra: Sound-bites have consequences.
Which brings me to … this.* Will any Dem have the courage to use that in an ad?**
Sound-bites have consequences, indeed. Life-and-death ones, even. Freedom! Liberty! Y’know.
**UPDATE: Turns out that the Dems actually are doing this. I’m stunned. The Dem campaign-consultant-industrial-complex usually is stuck in a Reagan era crouch-and-cower stance.