With Republican Gains, Adjuncts May Struggle to Keep Foothold on Capitol Hill

November 06, 2014 / Phil Lesch

The Chronicle of Higher Education
November 6th, 2014

A breakthrough political year for advocates for adjunct instructors appears to be ending on a down note, with only modest gains to show for their efforts and newly diminished prospects that Congress will act to improve adjuncts' working conditions anytime soon.

The results of this week’s elections, which will give Republicans control of the Senate and tighten their grip on the House of Representatives, are expected to leave Congress much less willing to support any federal intervention in colleges’ dealings with their employees, and much more hostile to the labor unions that provide nearly all of the political clout contingent faculty members have.

"The political climate now is such that I don’t see any sort of relief for adjuncts going very far in Congress," said Richard K. Vedder, a former Congressional staff member and an emeritus professor of economics at Ohio University who often has testified on Capitol Hill.

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