While Madison Rages On….


The rest of the nation is moving on the public sector unions.  The inertia is clearly in favor of those who wanna reign in the influence of those unions.

However, that doesn’t mean the fight is over; far from it.  For example, recent developments in Wisconsin show how delicate the balance really is:

MADISON, Wis. – The monthlong saga over Gov. Scott Walker’s plan to drastically curb collective bargaining rights for public workers in Wisconsin took a turn Friday that could force a dramatic rebooting of the entire legislative process.

A judge temporarily blocked the law from taking effect, raising the possibility that the Legislature may have to vote again to pass the bill…

It isn’t over folks.

However, as all eyes are on what’s going on in Wisconsin, good progress is being made elsewhere.

Idaho:

(Reuters) – By a 20-15 vote, the Idaho Senate on Thursday approved legislation that curtails collective bargaining by public school teachers.

The measure restricts collective bargaining to salaries and benefits, removing from negotiations such provisions as class sizes, teacher workload and promotions.

Ohio:

(Reuters) – An Ohio state Senate panel voted on Wednesday to strip public sector unions of some collective bargaining rights and end their right to strike, in the latest swipe at the power of unions by a state.

The Senate Labor Committee vote was 7-5, with one Republican and four Democrats voting against. The measure now moves to the Republican-controlled state Senate, which could approve it as early as Wednesday.

If endorsed by the state legislature and signed by Republican Governor John Kasich, Ohio would become the biggest state so far to enact sweeping restrictions on public sector unions.

Florida:

(Reuters) – Florida lawmakers gave final legislative approval on Wednesday to a bill aimed at replacing teacher tenure with a merit-based system, in the latest clash between a U.S. state government and public employee unions.

By an 80-39 vote, the Florida House approved largely along party lines a Republican-backed measure that would decide teacher pay according to a yet-to-be determined measure of student performance on standardized tests along with other criteria determined by local school boards.

Wisconsin will eventually prevail.  The law clearly states that the 24 hour notice isn’t required.  And if judges DO uphold it?  They’ll just re-vote; either WITH the budget language and Democrats or without.

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6 comments
  1. I do agree that there has been a tremendous need for union reform for some time. There has been a long history of corruption and greed in its leadership for decades. Much like government, union leadership has forgotten about the people who they represent. When I think about unions, I remember back to working in a produce warehouse in my youth. It was a small Teamster shop, and the 9 hourly workers were largely ignored by those who were responsible in representing them. However, when it was union election time, the local union boss was always present, arriving in his brand new Cadillac that our nine hourly employees helped pay for. Otherwise, you never saw him.

    However, I think that completely or partially stripping public unions of collective bargaining is not the right approach. I would think that those that these unions supposedly represent are being punished, not the corrupt officials at the head of the line. I simply fear that the wrong people are under attack. That’s why I rail against the actions taken by Governors such as Scott Walker and John Kasich.

    Union reform is needed, but it needs to start at the top, not the bottom. The only ones getting rich are the Union heads, not the people they represent.

    • pino said:

      Union reform is needed, but it needs to start at the top, not the bottom. The only ones getting rich are the Union heads, not the people they represent.

      There are some who would like to strike a compromise. They ask that we simply make union membership voluntary. I might be willing to listen to such a plan.

  2. I agree. I think mandatory membership in order to work is oppositional to what our country is about. I truly believe that unions are needed in order to protect the rights of workers, but if a prospective worker chooses not to have representation other than his or her self in the work place, that should be their right as well.

    • pino said:

      I truly believe that unions are needed in order to protect the rights of workers

      I believe that the ability to gather like minded individuals in order to “protest” conditions are needed. I do not think the legal rights granted unions are required.

  3. We won’t know how this will ultimately go because Wisconsin will face recall elections, and of course new elections down the line. I still think that this is part of a GOP overreach (perhaps comparable to Democratic overreach after 2008) and that the electoral tide will shift again. Ultimately the public (and apparently most people in Wisconsin) would prefer compromise to mean spirited attempts to destroy the opposition.

    • pino said:

      We won’t know how this will ultimately go because Wisconsin will face recall elections, and of course new elections down the line.

      I suspect that the Democrats will have better luck in future elections as opposed to recalls. Recalls are historically very difficult.

      Ultimately the public (and apparently most people in Wisconsin) would prefer compromise to mean spirited attempts to destroy the opposition.

      I agree. And Gallup shows that the public is in favor of reducing the power of the unions. The attempts to destroy the opposition was the attempt of the Democrats to stop a vote by literally leaving their post.

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