Democratic presidential candidate Richard A. Gephardt showed support for striking grocery store workers by joining their picket lines. 70,000 union workers in Southern and Central California are engaged in a labor dispute with major area grocery chains over health care benefits. Gephardt has proposed a new health-care plan that would combine mandatory health insurance requirements with refundable tax credits for employers. Gephardt feels that this plan would make it easier for employers to compete with low-cost operators like Wal-Mart.
See Susannah Rosenblatt and Melinda Fulmer, Los Angeles Times, December 3, 2003