Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels Sabotages Right to Work Law

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels Sabotages Right to Work Law

(Source: March 2011 NRTWC Newsletter) In Contrast, Maine Governor Stands Up For His Avowed Principles Eight years ago, Indiana citizens who were determined to free themselves and their fellow Hoosiers from the shackles of compulsory unionism launched what they knew from the beginning would be a sustained, and often difficult, effort to pass a state Right to Work law. Ever since then, the organization these citizens put into high-gear in 2003, the Indiana Right to Work Committee, has mobilized an ever-loudening drumbeat of support for employee freedom. Over the course of the ongoing campaign, the Indianapolis-based Right to Work group has benefited from the counsel and experience of the National Right to Work Committee. And National Committee members and supporters who live in the Hoosier State, roughly 119,000 strong and growing in number year after year, have been the bulwark of the Indiana Right to Work campaign. Stubborn Opposition to Right To Work Has Ended Long Political Careers in Indiana In the 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2010 state election cycles, pro-Right to Work Hoosiers sent thousands upon thousands of postcards, letters, and e-mail messages to their legislative candidates urging them to oppose forced unionism. Right to Work activists also reinforced the point with phone calls and personal visits. Since the Indiana Committee emerged as a major statewide citizens lobby, many politicians who once rode the fence have decided to take a stand in favor of Right to Work. Other politicians who stubbornly continued to carry water for, or at least appease, Big Labor have gone down to defeat. For example, in early 2005, then-Senate President Pro Tem Robert Garton (R-Columbus) told National Right to Work Committee President Mark Mix that Right to Work legislation wouldn't get a floor vote in his chamber as long as he held his leadership position. In 2006, Mr. Garton, a 36-year incumbent and the longest serving Senate pro tem in American history, was defeated by primary challenger Greg Walker, an underfunded political novice. A critical asset Mr. Walker did have going for him was his 100% support for Right to Work. That same year, 26-year state Rep. Mary Kay Budak (R-LaPorte) was ousted in a primary upset by pro-Right to Work challenger Tom Dermody. A few months earlier, Ms. Budak had been one of the minority of House Republicans who voted with Big Labor to defeat an amendment that would have made Indiana a Right to Work state.

National Right To Work Indiana Ad Blitz Conference

From the joint appearance by the National Right To Work Committee President Mark Mix and Indiana Right To Work Committee President Rob Beiswenger.  Mr. Mix's comments follow or his complete statement can be downloaded  by clicking this link. Thank you for coming today. I have a brief statement about the National Right to Work Committee’s joint multi-media campaign with the Indiana Right to Work Committee, and then I’ll take your questions. This $100,000 media campaign, which has been kicked off with an initial ad running this morning in the Indianapolis Star, will also include mail, phones, internet, a state-wide newspaper ad buy and hopefully TV and radio advertising. Our objective will be to urge Hoosier citizens to put pressure on Speaker Brian Bosma and Governor Mitch Daniels to use their Constitutionally-granted authority to force the Democrats to return to work and hold roll-call votes on the Indiana Right to Work Bill. More than four weeks ago, Indiana Democrats fled to Illinois to avoid voting on Right to Work because they understood if allowed to come to the floor for an up-or-down vote, the Right to Work Bill would pass and become law. The good news is, the Indiana Constitution requires legislators to legislate. And the Indiana Constitution, which requires a quorum of two-thirds, is also very clear on what to do about a walk out. Should legislators refuse to perform the jobs they were elected to do, the Indiana Constitution allows the majority party to authorize stiff fines and seek other remedies to force law-breaking legislators to return to work. Currently, Speaker Bosma is fining the Democrats who fled to Illinois a measly $350. The truth is, the Democrats know that these fines can easily be covered by the union bosses’ “special funds,” which is why they’ve done little or more than chuckle at this threat. Unless they want to continue being a laughingstock, it’s time for Speaker Bosma and Governor Daniels to start showing some backbone and force the Democrats to come back to work. To force the Democrats to come back to work, Daniels and the Republican majority should impose a $10,000 a day fine on each legislator until they return to work. If the Democrats still don’t return, the sitting legislature should take out liens on their property to force them to do the job they were elected to do. This would get the Democrats to come back to work, and the people of Indiana could get what they voted for on Election Day 2010 -- including Right to Work. The fact is, if passed, an Indiana Right to Work law would simply state that Hoosiers cannot be forced to pay dues or fees to a labor union as a condition of employment. And as the Governor has conceded in the past, forced unionism has put Indiana at an enormous disadvantage when compared to those states with Right to Work laws. The U.S. Department of Labor’s own statistics reveal that while Right to Work states were busy gaining jobs, Indiana has continued to lose them. Over the past decade, private-sector employment increased by 3.7% in Right to Work states, but fell by 8.8% here in Indiana.

The Real Issue in the Government Worker Union Battle

The Real Issue in the Government Worker Union Battle

NRTW President Mark Mix from the Investor's Business Daily: In Wisconsin, union officials — with support from the Obama White House — continue to orchestrate illegal teacher strikes, lead angry mass protests at the state capitol and picket the residences of legislators to safeguard Big Labor's government-granted monopoly bargaining power over hundreds of thousands of Badger State public employees. Raucous union rallies and intimidation of elected officials and their families in support of Big Labor's purported "right" to unchallenged monopoly bargaining control are occurring in other states as well. Americans learning about organized labor's battles in Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana and other states from TV, radio and newspaper reports may understandably be confused about what is at stake, especially if they have no personal experience with unions themselves. From afar, it's easy to draw the conclusion that public employees' right to join a union is at stake. But that is hardly the case. Public employees' freedom to join and pay dues to labor organizations is already legally protected across the U.S. and is not being challenged anywhere. What reform-minded elected officials are seeking to curtail, and in some cases even abolish, is government union chiefs' legal power to force public servants into a union as a condition of employment. Under the current labor laws of nearly half of the states, government union officials have been explicitly authorized to force all public employees in a workplace to pay union dues or be fired, as long as a majority of their fellow employees (among those expressing an opinion) support unionization. Such forced-unionism laws, which Big Labor is now fighting furiously to keep on the books in the face of increasingly intense public opposition, actually trample on, rather than protect, employees' freedom to make personal decisions about unionism.