State Right to Work Laws at Risk This Fall

First, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka declared that no candidate refusing to support the anti-Right to Work PRO Act would get AFL-CIO bosses’ backing. Next, Arizona AFL-CIO chiefs endorsed U.S. Senate candidate Mark Kelly. Credit: Conor E. Ralph for New York Times

Forced Fees Could Potentially Be Re-Imposed Nationwide in 2021

By the time this National Right to Work Newsletter edition reaches its readers across America, career Big Labor politician Joe Biden will almost certainly have been officially nominated by the Democrat Party to face off against pro-Right to Work President Donald Trump in the November elections.

Most current polls suggest Mr. Biden will win this contest and become the next President.

Biden Labor Policy Plan Even More Radical Than Obama or Clinton Agenda

Mr. Biden is campaigning on a labor-policy platform that is far more radical even than those advanced by 2016 Democrat nominee Hillary Clinton or former President Barack Obama.

Just for starters, Mr. Biden proposes to wipe out all 27 state Right to Work laws, so that union bosses can force millions more American workers to pay union dues, or else be fired.

Will Joe Biden be able to implement this anti-worker and economically devastating program if the polls turn out to be correct and he is elected?

This could well depend on the outcomes of a handful of U.S. Senate races, including several in Right to Work states, that will likely be decided by very narrow margins.

As if to hammer home the point that he is a radical advocate of forced unionism, former Vice President (2009-17) Biden openly invited Vermont U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, the avowed socialist who unsuccessfully challenged him for the Democrat nomination early this year, to help him shape his presidential agenda.

In May, Mr. Biden and Mr. Sanders announced the members of their six “Unity Task Forces,” small teams of political insiders commissioned to assemble what was effectively the first draft of the Democrat National Committee (DNC) platform.

Inside-the-D.C. Beltway union bosses Lee Saunders, Sara Nelson, Mary Kay Henry, Lily Eskelsen Garcia, and Randi Weingarten were members of the economic, health care and education task forces.

‘Democrats Will Prioritize Passing the [Right to Work-Destroying] PRO Act’

On July 8, the Biden-Sanders task forces’ 110-page “blueprint” for a Biden presidency was unveiled.

With regard to labor-policy matters, the Biden-Sanders Unity Task Force Recommendations come straight out of the playbook of Mr. Sanders, a lifelong rabid proponent of compulsory unionism.

For example, on page 14, the document declares that “Democrats will prioritize passing the PRO Act” and “repeal . . . ‘right-to-work’ laws . . . .”

As alarming as it is, this sop to Big Labor merely reaffirms Mr. Biden’s 2019 vow to push for adoption of the cynically mislabeled “Protecting the Right to Organize” Act, or PRO Act (H.R.2474/S.1306).

The PRO Act is a smorgasbord of new special privileges for union bosses that includes a provision making private-sector forced union dues and fees permissible in all 50 states, including states where they are currently prohibited by state Right to Work laws.

State and Local Public Employees Who Wish to Stay Union-Free in Biden Sights

This legislation, which passed the Nancy Pelosi-ruled U.S. House of Representatives on February 6, includes a wide array of other special-interest provisions designed to further empower union bosses to foist their “representation” on as many private-sector workers as possible.

But the PRO Act actually doesn’t go far enough for Mr. Biden.

Even though state and local employees have traditionally been regarded as subject to the jurisdiction of the states, not the federal government, Mr. Biden has said he would be eager to sign federal legislation foisting union monopoly bargaining on public workers in all 50 states

McSally-Gardner-Tillis
To pave the way for 2021 enactment of radical forced-unionism legislation, Big Labor is targeting for defeat pro-Right to Work U.S. senators like Martha McSally (Arizona, left) Cory Gardner (Colorado, center) and Thom Tillis (North Carolina).

Senate Could Be Right to Work’s ‘Last Firewall’ Against Host of Power Grabs

Page 66 of the Biden-Sanders “blueprint” reaffirms the candidate’s support for a “federal guarantee” that Big Labor can wield monopoly-bargaining control over “public-sector employees” at all levels of government.

As tantalizing as the pro-forced unionism agenda laid out in the Biden-Sanders “blueprint” undoubtedly is for union chieftains from AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on down, the union hierarchy is well aware of the fact that the election of Joe Biden as President alone will not make this agenda a reality.

National Right to Work Committee Vice President Mary King explained:

“Barring a burst of pro-union monopoly judicial activism from the U.S. Supreme Court that will remain unlikely as long as the High Court is constituted as it is at present, Mr. Trumka and Co. will only be able to realize their dream of destroying all state Right to Work laws with the help of Congress.

“In other words, the Senate will have to join the House in rubber-stamping the PRO Act or another similar scheme, or Joe Biden will never get a chance to sign it.

“Indeed, the Senate could potentially be Right to Work’s last firewall against not just the PRO Act, but an entire host of Big Labor power grabs.”

This year, the AFL-CIO empire and its subsidiaries, as well as the top brass of non-AFL-CIO unions like the National Education Association (NEA) and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), are determined both to tear down that Right to Work firewall and install Joe Biden in the White House.

Back PRO Act Unreservedly, Or Big Labor Won’t Give You ‘A Dollar or a Door Knock’

A key part of the AFL-CIO strategy is to withhold all Big Labor support for any federal candidate, regardless of party affiliation, who resists pledging not merely to vote for the PRO Act if it comes up for a roll call, but also to do everything he or she can to move this scheme forward. 

U.S. Senate and House candidates from all 50 states, including the 27 current Right to Work states, have already been given notice by Mr. Trumka that nothing less than their wholehearted support for the forced unionism-expanding PRO Act will be acceptable.

“The words Mr. Trumka spoke just before the House rubber-stamped the PRO Act in February couldn’t have been more plain,” recalled Ms. King.

“‘Those who would oppose, delay or derail this legislation, do not ask us — do not ask the [Organized] [L]abor movement — for a dollar or a door knock. We won’t be coming.’”

Ms. King continued:

“Mr. Trumka’s words of just a few months ago must not be forgotten now that AFL-CIO bosses are pouring massive amounts of money and manpower into 2020 campaigns to defeat anti-forced unionism senators representing strongly pro-Right to Work states like Arizona, North Carolina and Georgia.

“As far as Right to Work researchers can ascertain through Internet searches, Big Labor-backed U.S. Senate challengers like Democrats Mark Kelly [Ariz.] and Cal Cunningham [N.C.] have said nothing publicly about where they stand on the PRO Act, which would override their own states’ bans on forced union fees.

“But since Mr. Kelly and Mr. Cunningham have both been formally endorsed by AFL-CIO operatives in their states, and are now benefitting from their backing, Right to Work supporters must infer they have made secret commitments to back the PRO Act.”

Survey 2020 Program Aims to Pressure ‘Stealth’ Candidates to Change Course

The National Right to Work Committee’s Survey 2020 program, said Ms. King, is expressly designed to prevent politicians from getting away with concealing until after Election Day  pro-forced unionism stances they know will be unpopular with voters in their jurisdiction.

“The Survey 2020,” she said, “will leave Big Labor candidates like Mark Kelly and Cal Cunningham with a choice: Repudiate the deals they have cut to support union special privileges, or face the potential political consequences.”