The politics are tangled when it comes to the Trump administration’s initial decision—which still could change—not to include construction in its proposed apprenticeship rule revision. Including construction in the proposed plan could further accelerate the shrinking of the union segment by boosting open-shop training with more government support. Higher-paying union jobs can add to construction costs, but unions also set the bar high on quality training at a time when complex projects require more knowledge and productivity from all participants. That training, through union apprenticeship, also is critical to slow a decline in standard of living that would knock more workers down the rungs of the middle class—or out of it completely. Under the proposal, apprentices would be paid minimum wage, instead of collectively bargained higher rates.