Congressional Sponsorship of H.R.785 and S.545 Has Topped 100
Thanks largely to relentless grass-roots activism by members of the National Right to Work Committee, the number of congressional cosponsors of the forced-dues repeal legislation introduced in the U.S. House and Senate early this year continues to rise.
H.R.785 and S.545, the national Right to Work measures respectively introduced early in the 2017-18 Congress by Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), had a combined total of well over 100 sponsors as this Newsletter went to press in early October.
These identical bills would not add a single word to federal labor law.
Instead, they would simply repeal the current provisions in the federal code that authorize and promote the termination of employees for refusal to pay dues or fees to an unwanted union.
Four Top-Ranking States For 2006-16 Job Growth All Have Right to Work Laws
“When H.R.785 or S.545 becomes law, private-sector employees in all 50 states will have the freedom to choose as individuals whether or not to join or bankroll a union,” explained Right to Work President Mark Mix.
“No employees covered by federal labor statutes will face job loss as a consequence of their decision to refuse to pay dues or fees to a union they would never join voluntarily.”
Compulsory unionism is, above all, a moral issue.
At the same time, of all the economic reforms Congress may consider during its 2017-18 session, federal forced-dues repeal, otherwise known as the National Right to Work Act, would surely have the strongest positive impact for jobs and incomes.
To illustrate the point, Mr. Mix called attention to the U.S. Labor Department Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data gauging civilian household employment growth over the past decade.
(Unlike the payroll jobs data reported by the Labor Department, household job statistics include self-employment, contractual employment, and employment at start-up businesses.)
“All of the four top-ranking states for 2006-16 employment growth are Right to Work states,” said Mr. Mix. “Meanwhile, seven of the eight lowest-ranking states for job growth lacked Right to Work laws as of 2016.”
(Since Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, and West Virginia all adopted Right to Work laws between 2012 and 2016, they are excluded from this analysis. Since Kentucky’s and Missouri’s forced-dues bans were not adopted until this year, they are counted as compulsory-unionism states here.)
Compulsory Union Dues Bankroll Growth-Hindering Policies
Overall, BLS-reported civilian household employment in Right to Work states grew by 8.1% over the past decade.
That increase is nearly double the average for forced-dues states.
But it’s not just employees and employers in states that lack Right to Work laws who are harmed by federally imposed compulsory unionism.
“Union bosses funnel a huge portion of the forced dues and fees they collect with federal policy’s abetment into politics,” Mr. Mix pointed out.
“And the union-label politicians who routinely get elected and reelected because of their forced-dues-funded support overwhelmingly favor higher taxes and more red-tape regulation of businesses.
“This is true at the federal, state and local levels.
“The actions of forced-dues-funded politicians thus result in less job growth nationwide. Of course, Big Labor politicians do the most damage in states where union bosses rake in the most forced-dues money.
“But if Congress repealed all the forced-dues provisions in the National Labor Relations Act and the federal Railway Labor Act, this massive impediment to economic growth nationwide would be lifted.
“Forced-dues repeal would spur job growth in all 50 states.”
Businesses and Employees in Current Right to Work States Would ‘Share the Benefits’
Mr. Mix explained: “Businesses and employees located in current Right to Work states would share the benefits as their major out-of-state suppliers and customers were freed from the burden of compulsory unionism.”
He vowed that, throughout the rest of this year and in 2018, the 2.8 million National Right to Work members would continue to encourage House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to allow hearings, debate, and roll-call votes on H.R.785 and S.545.
Mr. Mix declared: “Freedom-loving Americans have a right to know which federal politicians are willing to incur Big Labor’s wrath for the sake of ensuring that every worker can decide for himself or herself which union, if any, to support financially.”
Poll After Poll Shows Lopsided Public Support For Right to Work Principle
He urged Committee members and supporters to keep turning up the heat on their elected officials.
“Recorded votes in the House and Senate will advance the Right to Work cause,” emphasized Mr. Mix, “even if Big Labor rounds up enough pro-forced unionism and union boss-appeasing politicians to prevent the legislation from passing either chamber of Congress.”
“That’s because,” he continued, “recorded votes will make it clear exactly which politicians support employees’ personal freedom of choice, and which are Big Labor stooges.
“And poll after poll shows nearly 80% of Americans who regularly vote in federal contests support Right to Work.”
Mr. Mix added that, even though it’s almost impossible to get them to say it publicly and explicitly, the evidence is clear that union bosses themselves know public opposition to compulsory unionism is massive and intense.
“In fact, one of the most prominent anti-Right to Work activists in America, University of Oregon ‘labor studies’ professor and union consultant Gordon Lafer, recently couldn’t help admitting, ‘Almost every union I know is in a panic about what to do about Right to Work.’
“Dr. Lafer and his cohorts are undoubtedly concerned that six states have passed laws prohibiting forced union dues and fees just since the beginning of 2012, and that so far these laws have withstood multiple Big Labor attempts to get them overthrown in court.
“But it won’t really be time for them to panic until floor votes on federal forced-dues repeal are held in both chambers of Congress!”