Brooklyn Law Review


By virtually all accounts, American society has become increasingly polarized during the past couple of decades. Indeed, the degree of political polarization on issues such as voting rights, gun control, abortion rights, and COVID vaccines has been so extreme that political scientists have worried about whether the conditions necessary for the United States to maintain a democratic society have broken down. This article examines this issue in the context of federal labor law and labor relations. It argues that American labor law is framed around an "industrial democracy narrative" that is today being sharply threatened by extant political polarization. It then sets forth a series of "interventions" and regulatory reforms to potentially help ameliorate this situation in the labor context, and to better advance the collective representation democracy ideal established by the US Congress when it enacted the National Labor Relations Act.