Big Labor ‘Pulling Out All the Stops’ to Defeat Right to Work Issue-Dodging U.S. Senate Candidate in Alaska

In the hotly contested U.S. Senate races in South Dakota, Montana, Iowa, Arkansas, Kentucky, Georgia, Louisiana, and North Carolina this fall, there is one major-party candidate on the ballot who is receiving massive support from the union political machine, and another who is pledging 100% support for Right to Work.

In seven out of eight of these key races, the pro-Right to Work candidate is currently ahead, according to the Real Clear Politics average of the most recent polls.  And even in North Carolina, where pro-forced unionism incumbent Sen. Kay Hagan holds a small lead in the RCP average, challenger Thom Tillis, who consistently opposes Big Labor monopolies, is apparently gaining ground.

By pledging to support national Right to Work legislation that would repeal all the provisions in the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and Railway Labor Act (RLA) that currently authorize and promote forced unionism, as well as other federal measures rolling back Big Labor’s special privileges, candidates mobilize public support among the 70-80% of citizens who believe no worker should be fired for refusal to join or bankroll an unwanted union.

Over the years, candidates in state after state have found that the popular backing they gain as a result of taking a clear stand against compulsory unionism helps them overcome the opposition generated by the forced dues-fueled political machine.

In contrast, candidates who are facing off against union-boss “friendly” opponents, but do not themselves stand up for Right to Work unabashedly, end up hurting themselves.  Big Labor routinely opposes such “fence sitters” just as ferociously as it does candidates who actively court the support of people who favor voluntary unionism.  But grass-roots Right to Work advocates are naturally unenthusiastic about candidates who seem not to care about an issue that is very important to them.

An analysis of Alaska’s U.S. Senate race appearing this week on the web site of the rabidly pro-forced unionism publication Mother Jones (see the link below) illustrates the point.  Alaska union bosses (with the full backing of national union honchos in Washington, D.C.) are “pulling out all the stops this year” to ensure the reelection of Big Labor Sen. Mark Begich:

“This is literally the most active we’ve ever been in an election cycle,” says Vince Beltrami, the president of the Alaska AFL-CIO, which represents nearly all unions in the state.  

Union members have been working the phones, pushing out mailings, and canvassing on behalf of Begich. Volunteers have even taken the unusual step of door-knocking in areas far outside of Alaska’s urban centers, says Jerry McBeath, a professor of political science at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. Because of the unprecedented level of campaign action this year, Beltrami says, the AFL-CIO had to rent out an extra 7,000-square-foot warehouse.

In addition to boots-on-the-ground support for Begich, unions are also throwing down for TV ads to help ensure the freshman senator gets a second term in office.

Meanwhile, Begich’s GOP challenger, state Attorney General Dan Sullivan, has refused to answer his National Right to Work candidate survey or make any public statements about how he will vote on key compulsory unionism-related issues if elected.  Big Labor bosses and their militant followers hate Sullivan like poison, but Alaska Right to Work proponents have no reason to be enthusiastic about him.

Because President Barack Obama is extremely unpopular in Alaska, and because Begich has sided with Obama again and again on controversial issues, Sullivan has a very good chance of becoming Alaska’s next senator.  But if he does, it certainly won’t be because his dodging of the Right to Work issue has somehow lessened Big Labor’s determination to defeat him.  Voter for voter, the union machine is probably lavishing more forced-dues money on its campaign to reelect Mark Begich than it is pouring into any other Senate race in the country this year.

By refusing to say if he will vote for national Right to Work legislation if elected, GOP U.S. Senate candidate Dan Sullivan has snubbed the pro-Right to Work majority of voters in Alaska, apparently without dampening union bosses’ determination to defeat him by even a whit. Image: Mark Thiessen/AP Photo

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