No End in Sight For Missouri Union Bosses’ War on Right to Work
Throughout last fall’s hard-fought gubernatorial showdown in Missouri between Right to Work advocate Eric Greitens (R) and Big Labor apologist Chris Koster (D ), political observers of all stripes agreed compulsory unionism was on the ballot.
No one doubted that a Greitens victory would lead promptly to adoption of a Missouri Right to Work law. That’s why the forced dues-fueled union political machine went all out to bolster the Koster campaign.
In late August 2016, fervently pro-forced unionism St. Louis politician Jake Hummel, then a state representative and now a state senator, publicly acknowledged what was at stake in the race for governor:
“For organized labor, it is make or break. . . . If we don’t get Chris Koster elected, Missouri will very quickly be a right-to-work state.”
On the campaign trail, Greitens enthusiastically courted the support of the overwhelming majority of Missourians who agree with the Right to Work principle. He vowed again and again to fight for passage of a Right to Work law, because compulsory unionism is morally wrong and also because, in his words, “Missouri has lost countless good-paying jobs to more business-friendly states.”
In the end, despite the fact that Big Labor spent, by its own admission, a total of more than $12 million to secure the governorship for Koster, voters backed the pro-Right to Work candidate for chief executive by a solid margin.
Just as important, voters returned to office all Right to Work-supporting legislators in the Missouri House and Senate who sought reelection.
Today Greitens and his allies in the Missouri Legislature are poised to fulfill the mandate they received to protect employees from forced union dues and fees. The House and Senate have both enacted Right to Work measures that differ only in the details. It is expected that a finalized Right to Work measure will be sent to Greitens’ desk for his signature by early next month.
Unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of Missouri citizens who believe it is wrong to force workers to pay union dues or fees as a job condition will have little time to celebrate their victory. That’s because Big Labor has already announced publicly that it will attempt to strangle Missouri’s new Right to Work law in the cradle.
State AFL-CIO chief Mike Louis has so far submitted 10 initiative-petition proposals that would, if approved, amend the Missouri Constitution to prohibit statutory Right to Work protections. Colluding late last year with lame-duck Secretary of State Jason Kander (D), the AFL-CIO brass concocted misleading ballot summaries for the proposed anti-Right to Work initiatives that would cover up the fact that a “yes” vote would be a vote to reinstate forced union dues and fees.
Apparently, freedom-loving citizens in the “Show Me” State will have to refight the Right to Work battle over the next year and a half. (See the news story linked below for additional information.)
But National Right to Work leaders and members are committed to educating ordinary Missourians about what the union bosses are up to so they can respond appropriately. In the end, with determination and steadfastness, Right to Work’s imminent victory in Missouri can withstand all Big Labor attacks.