The union representing railroad conductors rejected a White House-brokered deal and a strike could start as soon as December 9.
The latest rejection comes from the union representing 28,000 conductors, brakemen, and yardmen.
NPR says the total number of unions rejecting the agreement is four with a combined membership of close to 60,000 workers.
Eight other unions ratified the deal but could get pulled back into the dispute. NPR says that’s because if one union decides to strike, all of the unions will honor the picket lines.
The National Grain and Feed Association, the Soy Transportation Coalition, the National Milk Producers Federation, and many other agricultural groups are asking Congress to step in and prevent a shutdown, which would be catastrophic for the U.S. economy. The USDA says railroads carry 29 percent of the nation’s soybeans, 33 percent of the corn, and 60 percent of U.S. wheat to export terminals.