Biden’s State of the Union address was predictably full of ridiculous moments. There was the stunned look on Mike Lee’s face as he attempted to comprehend what Biden was saying, the part where Biden started arguing with the audience, and the moment when Biden couldn’t remember Chuck Schumer’s title.
One of the funniest and most ridiculous moments, however, came when Biden suggested that waiters and waitresses have to sign non-competes. For the record, that is completely false. In fact, it was so false that even Politifact admitted as much, saying:
“In the #StateOfTheUnion, Biden said “30 million workers had to sign non-compete agreements when they took a job. So a cashier at a burger place can’t cross the street to take the same job at another burger place to make a couple bucks more.” False.”
In the #StateOfTheUnion, Biden said “30 million workers had to sign non-compete agreements when they took a job. So a cashier at a burger place can’t cross the street to take the same job at another burger place to make a couple bucks more.” False. https://t.co/a7GXfoDvu7
— PolitiFact (@PolitiFact) February 8, 2023
That line about non-competes came when Biden was rambling about workers “getting stiffed,” saying:
Americans are tired of being played for suckers.
Pass the Junk Fee Prevention Act so companies stop ripping us off.
For too long, workers have been getting stiffed.
We’re beginning to restore the dignity of work.
For example, 30 million workers had to sign non-compete agreements when they took a job. So a cashier at a burger place can’t cross the street to take the same job at another burger place to make a couple bucks more.
We’re banning those agreements so companies have to compete for workers and pay them what they’re worth.
Well, Republicans knew the burger thing to be ridiculous. In fact, as soon as Biden started spewing his nonsense in one of his typical gaffes, McCarthy and other Republicans started roaring with laughter. Watch that here:
This isn’t the first time that Biden has made the false claim about McDonald’s workers and non-competes. He said much the same thing in late July, saying:
“McDonald’s is making billions of dollars, but here’s the deal. They’ve made you all sign noncompete contracts that you cannot go across town to try to get a job at Burger King. And maybe, and I’m not saying you could, but you get 25 cents an hour more. People who are hourly workers are required to sign noncompete: ‘I will not go anywhere to any business like the one I’m in to get a raise.’”
That is demonstrably untrue, as PolitiFact reported, saying:
Biden said McDonald’s workers sign employment contracts with language that blocks them for working for a competing fast food chain such as Burger King.
They don’t. A noncompete agreement prevents someone from working for a competitor. That was not the case. Any McDonald’s worker who quit to work at a Burger King is free to do that.
There was a time when they faced a different hurdle. They were blocked from moving from one McDonald’s franchise to another McDonald’s franchise. That is what economists have dubbed a no-poaching clause, and it applies only among franchises within the same chain.
Until 2017, that was part of the agreement between the local franchise owners and McDonald’s Corp., the franchiser. The local owners could not lure workers away from each other.
Though McCarthy and the Republicans breaking into laughter at Biden and one of his typical gaffes was perhaps the best moment of the night, Biden bickering with the crowd was nearly as entertaining. Watch that here:
Wow! Republicans boo Biden as he lies about their intention to cut Medicare and Social Security. Biden gets flustered and goes off script. pic.twitter.com/t7jFWo2W7m
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) February 8, 2023
By: Will Tanner. Follow me on Twitter @Will_Tanner_1