And poised is maybe too weak a work. In point of fact, Wilhelm and his allies are already effectively in control of UNITE-HERE's exec board. At the board's last meeting in December, the board made some decisions that UNITE loyalists strongly opposed, so much so that the UNITE partisans refused to participate in the vote and Raynor followed up with a lawsuit.
Which brings us to SEIU's dear leader, Andy Stern. Following Raynor's lawsuit, Stern made an offer:
Today it is apparent to us that the merger of UNITE and HERE has failed to meet its goals that both unions had hoped for and worked towards.
After four (4) years, we believe it is time as well as necessary for our movement, for both unions to reconsider their future -- including merger into SEIU as UNITE HERE or ending their merger and returning to their previous status and merging into SEIU as separate organizations. |source (pdf!)|
I'm going to go out on a limb here and theorize that the Stern offer was invited by Raynor, who has collaborated with Stern in the past to sign secret "growth agreements" with employers. In any case, it's pretty ballsy.