Democrats left no liberal interest group behind in their $1.9 trillion spending bill this month. That includes private unions whose ailing multi-employer pension plans will get an $86 billion rescue. This is the first of many such air-drops to come.
It was perhaps inevitable that Congress would bail out multi-employer pensions for the Teamsters and other private unions after doing so for coal miners in 2019. But the Democrats’ spending bill does nothing to fix the structural problems that have made these union pensions funds so sick.
Multi-employer pension funds became common after World War II in industries like trucking, construction, manufacturing and retail. They allow employers with a common union to join together and offer collective pension plans. Labor and management collectively bargain benefits and contributions as well as jointly administer the plans.
Unions like the plans because workers continue to accrue benefits if they switch employers. If one …