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Bush can continue to screw white collar workers out of overtime

God bless the Bush economy.

Yet another casualty of the need to pass the omnibus budget bill. Dems had attached an amendment to kill the overtime regulations that continues to screw six million white collar workers out of the ability to earn OT. Bush threatened to veto the entire bill if that provision was still in there. (WP):

An attempt to block the Bush administration’s proposed changes in overtime rules was killed before the 2005 spending bill received final congressional approval over the weekend.

Democrats attached an amendment to the Senate’s version of the bill that would have overturned the overtime regulations, which went into effect in August. The amendment, which would have prevented any worker previously covered by overtime from losing that protection, was deleted in a conference committee.

The White House had threatened to veto the entire $388 billion spending bill if the overtime amendment was included.

“This battle isn’t over,” Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) said in a statement. Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and Kennedy “intend to push hard” to eliminate the overtime regulations, a Kennedy spokesman said.

The Department of Labor amended the nation’s overtime rules this year, saying they needed updating. Critics say the new rules will deny millions of employees overtime pay.

Several groups produced studies and reports pointing out what they say are loopholes in the rules through which white-collar workers — 6 million, according to Ross Eisenbrey, vice president of the labor-backed Economic Policy Institute — could eventually lose overtime.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding