Right to Work on the Move in Missouri?

Missouri State Sen. Jason Crowell wants Missourians to be able choose whether to join or not join a union without the choice being forced upon them to get or keep their job.

Missouri State Senator Jason Crowell  eloquently lays out the case for enactment of a Right to Work law in the Show-Me state.  It would create jobs and protect workers:

“Look no further than our own state to see how financial incentives fail to sway businesses. In a special session, the General Assembly gave labor-supported tax credits to Ford to entice it to locate a new product line to replace the Claycomo plant jobs that are leaving. But months after being offered those tax credits, Ford is still unwilling to commit to Missouri.

Maybe, before making their assertions, unions should look at the evidence of job growth found in the most current data available by the U.S. Department of Labor. Job creation in Right to Work states is growing 2.5 times faster than non-Right to Work states. From 2003 to 2008, the number of private-sector employees in RTW states grew at 9.1 percent compared to forced-union state employee growth of 3.6 percent.

Unions also allege there is evidence that RTW laws “are actually associated with lower wages.” That statement failed to share the real data. The truth is, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, from 2003 to 2008, personal income levels increased by 15.8 percent in Right to Work states compared to 9.1 percent growth in forced-union states. In fact, a recent study by Barry Paulson, a professor of economics at the University of Colorado, found the weighted average adjusted household income in Right to Work state metro areas was $4,258 more than in non-Right to Work state metro areas.

They should further consider that during the recession of 2001, Oklahoma became the most recent state to adopt Right to Work laws. In doing so, during that time, its median household income increased by $779 while the national median fell by $1,014, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. And, contrary to Sen. Green’s presumption, its poverty rate dropped by 1.5 percent while poverty increased by 0.8 percent nationwide.

Still, those protecting unions argue there is little economic impact to Right to Work initiatives. But forced-union states are losing billions of dollars because families are following the jobs and fleeing to Right to Work states. Since 2000, the IRS’s Statistical Information Service showed a net total of 1.63 million taxpayers have moved to Right to Work states. This migration to Right to Workstates has cost forced-union states from 2006 to 2007 a total of $18.3 billion in income without including the lost spending to local businesses.

The data on the economic benefits of making Missouri a Right to Workstate cannot be ignored and is why I oppose the current law that forces workers to financially support a union as a condition of their employment. If union members such as Sen. [Tim] Green continue to put unions first instead of Missouri’s working families, they will follow this economic model all the way to unemployment. No worker who chooses to join a union should be denied that choice, but no worker in Missouri should be forced to join a union just to hold a job.”