Joe Biden ‘will boost workers’ rights’

The Democratic presidential candidate's senior economic adviser believes US workers lack bargaining power

A senior adviser to Joe Biden has claimed a new era of workers’ rights will loosen the grip of corporate America on the US economy if the challenger wins the White House.

Jared Bernstein, who served as Mr Biden’s economic adviser when he was vice-president under Barack Obama, told The Sunday Telegraph: “There is a key role for the Government to play in making sure that working people get a fair share of the growing economy, and one of the most important aspects of that role is making sure that workers have the bargaining power they lack.”

Trade unions have been in decline in the US for decades, accelerated in 1981 by Ronald Reagan’s confrontation with air traffic controllers.

Mr Reagan fired thousands of illegal strikers and triggered a fall in industrial action as union power was curbed. Mr Biden plans to strengthen unions and “check the abuse of corporate power over labour”.

Mr Bernstein is one of the leading economic voices around a candidate holding together a coalition of moderates and left-wingers.

But the ambitions of left of centre Democrats may be thwarted if the party fails to win the Senate, or only gains a small majority.