The Case Against the Davis-Bacon Act: 54 Reasons for Repeal – Book Forum for This New Publication

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Tomorrow (Wednesday, October 17, 2012) at noon Eastern time (9:00 a.m. Pacific time), the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C. will hold a forum on the new book The Case Against the Davis-Bacon Act: 54 Reasons for Repeal.

The Case Against the Davis-Bacon Act: 54 Reasons for Repeal

The Case Against the Davis-Bacon Act: 54 Reasons for Repeal

Here’s the Cato Institute’s description of the book forum:

Featuring the author Armand Thieblot, Olin Institute, George Mason University; with comments by Maurice Baskin, Partner, Venable, LLP, and co-author of Construction Union Tactics to Regain Jobs and Public Policy; moderated by James A. Dorn, Editor, Cato Journal, and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Cato Institute.

Advance copies of the book will be exclusively available at the forum. Online registration for this event is now closed. If you are interested in registering for the event please email If you can’t make it to the Cato Institute, watch this event live online at and join the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag #CatoEvents. Also follow @CatoEvents on Twitter to get future event updates, live streams, and videos from the Cato Institute.

The Davis-Bacon Act, the law that sets wages typically at or near the union rate for workers on billions of dollars worth of public works annually, has afflicted the construction industry for eight full decades. Obsolete and impossible to administer fairly when first passed in 1931, it has not improved since. It has been actively sustained through biased participation by the Department of Labor for the exclusive benefit of organized labor. If not repealed, Davis-Bacon will add billions of dollars of unnecessary costs to public works built over the next decade. Armand Thieblot, a longtime student of the act, documents some major reasons—in addition to cost savings—to repeal it, and shows why actions short of repeal will not be effective. Repeal of Davis-Bacon early in the coming administration will provide major stimulus to a construction industry that desperately needs the help.

When I began working for Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) in January 1995 as the Manager of State Affairs, one of my first duties was the promotion and distribution of Dr. Armand Thieblot’s 1995 report State Prevailing Wage Laws: An Assessment at the Start of 1995. As the general counsel for Associated Builders and Contractors, Maury Baskin provided me with advice and guidance during my more than 17 years in government affairs management positions for ABC National, ABC of California, and the ABC Golden Gate Chapter (now known as the ABC Northern California Chapter).

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