Cost of Forced Unionism Soars by Over 50% 

Year after year, far more taxpayers are moving out of forced-unionism states than are moving into them. They are taking their income with them. And forced-unionism states’ income losses due to taxpayer out-migration are soaring.

Big Labor’s States Lose $48.1 Billion in Income in a Single Year

For decades, states like New York, California, and Illinois have evidently been paying a high price for allowing forced dues-hungry union bosses to continue getting workers fired for refusal to bankroll their organizations.

Year after year, far more taxpayers have been leaving forced-unionism states than moving into them.

The cumulative loss of taxpayers has been cutting into their revenue bases.

Recently released data from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) indicate the cost of forced unionism soared by more than 50% in the Tax Filing Year 2019, as compared to the year before.

National Right to Work Committee President Mark Mix commented:

“It shouldn’t require fiscal catastrophes to persuade state elected officials to stop hurting the vast majority of their constituents just so the special privileges of a relative handful of union bosses can be perpetuated and even expanded.

“But state insolvency may well arrive before Big Labor politicians in states like New York, California and Illinois acknowledge the truth about the devastating effects of forced unionism.”

The facts speak for themselves.

As a group, the 23 states that still lack Right to Work laws lost a net total of $48.1 billion in adjusted gross income (AGI) from 2019 to 2020. That’s a 54% greater loss than what these same states endured from 2018 to 2019.

Data furnished by the IRS’s Statistics of Income (SOI) division make it possible to calculate the sum total of wages, salaries, and other income taxpayers take with them when they move from one state to another.

Forced-Dues States Lost An Average of $94,004 Per Fleeing Tax Filer

Personal income tax filers moving out of a forced-unionism state between 2019 and 2020 reported a total of $182 billion in annual income on the IRS forms they filed in 2020, or $94,004 per filer.

Tax filers moving into a forced-unionism state reported a total of $133.9 billion in income, or $81,642 per filer.

Both because of their substantial taxpayer losses due to net domestic out-migration, and because the tax filers they gained reported $12,362 less income apiece than the tax filers they lost, forced-unionism states lost a total of $48.1 billion in AGI in 2019-2020, compared to $31.3 billion the year before.

All of the nine states (New York, California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryland, Ohio, Minnesota and Pennsylvania) suffering the worst losses of income, in absolute terms, due to taxpayer out-migration from 2019 to 2020 lack Right to Work laws. Meanwhile, the seven states enjoying the biggest absolute gains in income due to taxpayer in-migration (Florida, Texas, Arizona, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Nevada) are all Right to Work.

“Compulsory unionism is wrong, plain and simple,” affirmed Mr. Mix. “It is also an economic albatross as our nation strives to get aggregate employment levels back to where they were before 2020’s severe, COVID-19 related downturn.”

While states that fail to shield employees from federal pro-forced unionism policies are harmed most of all, the entire country suffers severe damage.

Federal Politicians Bear Primary Blame For Forced-Dues States’ Decline

Mr. Mix explained: “The union-label politicians who regularly get elected and reelected because of Big Labor’s forced dues-funded support overwhelmingly favor higher taxes and more red-tape regulation of business. This is true at the federal, state and local levels.

“Private-sector job growth in all 50 states, including Right to Work states,  is hindered by the actions of Big Labor politicians.

“The congressmen and senators who foisted compulsory union dues on the entire country in 1935 and their successors who perpetuate this unjust system today are the principal culprits.

 “It is federal law, not the law of any state, that today forces millions of private-sector workers across America to fork over dues or fees to a union, whether they want it or not, as a condition of employment. Committee members are determined to abolish this unfair and economically destructive coercion of workers.”

Adoption by Congress of S.406/H.R.1275, the National Right to Work Act, would be a giant step in the right direction. It would repeal all the current forced-dues provisions in federal labor law.

Thanks primarily to Committee members’ persistent lobbying of elected officials, as of the end of June, 125 members of Congress had already signed on as sponsors of federal compulsory-dues repeal.  

This article was originally published in our monthly newsletter. Go here to access previous newsletter posts.

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