Courts Strike Down Challenges To Right To Work

Courts Strike Down Challenges To Right To Work – Washington Free Beacon

A pair of federal courts struck down union challenges to labor reforms in Indiana and Wisconsin last week, preserving major Republican gains aimed at cutting costs and attracting business.

Federal Judge Philip Simon on Thursday tossed out a lawsuit aimed at preventing Indiana from becoming the first right-to-work state in the Midwest. He rejected the union’s contention that Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels and the legislature overreached in pursuing labor reforms.

“None of the legal challenges launched by the union here to attack Indiana’s new Right to Work law can succeed,” he wrote. “The electorate can ultimately decide whether [lawmakers’] judgments are sound, wise, and constitute good governance and can express their opinions at the polls and by other means. But those are questions beyond the reach of the federal court.”

Glenn Taubman, an attorney with the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, was not surprised the unions failed to derail the reforms, which allow employees to opt out of forced unionization.

“Since the 1940s, the Supreme Court has upheld right-to-work laws in the face of union attacks, as RTW laws do not infringe on any union ‘rights,’” he said. “It is forced unionism and monopoly representation that infringe on individual employees’ rights.”

Judge Simon’s ruling only applies to federal challenges to the law. Unions have also sued in state court to prevent the law from going into effect. They say it violates an Indiana constitutional provision that prevents the government from denying private organizations their rightful wages.

“Indiana’s own constitution says that you can’t mandate people to act without just compensation,” said Marc Poulos, an attorney challenging the Indiana law on behalf of the Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa Foundation for Fair Contracting (IIIFFC). “Right-to-work no longer allow us to collect the reasonable fees for the representation we provide all employees.”

However, supporters of the law point out that the provision refers to the government honoring its own contracts for services rather than private transactions, such as union dues. Republican state Rep. Jerry Torr, who authored the right-to-work law, said he believes it will survive all legal challenges.

“Right-to-work has passed in more than 20 states and those have all withstood the various challenges and the test of time. Eventually our law will be found to be appropriate,” he said.

Soon after the Indiana ruling, a federal appeals court in Chicago upheld Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s public sector labor reforms, which helped close Wisconsin’s $3.6 billion deficit after its passage in 2010. The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the act “in its entirety,” overturning a previous federal ruling that stopped Act 10’s prohibition of automatic union deductions from employee paychecks and recertification.

The labor groups that brought the suit contended that curtailing the ability of unions to automatically collect dues from employee paychecks violated its freedom of speech. The court, however, determined that the system represented a “subsidy” to unions rather than an extension of natural rights.

“While the First Amendment prohibits ‘plac[ing] obstacles in the path’ of speech… nothing requires government to ‘assist others in funding the expression of particular ideas, including political ones,’” the decision says.

Walker welcomed the ruling, hoping it would allow the state to move past the division and at times violent upheaval caused by union members and allies.

“Today’s court ruling is a victory for Wisconsin taxpayers,” he said in a statement. “With this ruling behind us, we can now focus on the next state budget, which will invest in priorities to move our state forward.”

The ruling represented Walker’s second major victory in the fight to preserve the reforms, which took away collective bargaining for public sector employee benefits and pensions, while preserving them for salaries. Walker previously survived a recall election sponsored by the unions.

Act 10 has saved Wisconsin more than $2 billion since its June 2011 implementation.

The rulings come as unions ramp up legal challenges to Michigan’s new right-to-work law. Taubman says the courts have helped to solidify the foothold labor reformers have made in the heavily unionized Midwest.

“Because federal law is so clear, any union efforts to challenge laws that outlaw forced unionism or union bosses’ special privileges are destined to fail,” he said. “This is why the Michigan union bosses realize that any potential legal challenges they may bring to derail that state’s new RTW law are futile and a complete waste of their members’ money.”

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Obama’s Big Michigan Right-To-Work Lie: Lower Wages

Obama’s Big Michigan Right-To-Work Lie: Lower Wages – Investor’s Business Daily

The president says right-to-work laws mean “the right to work for less money.” So how does he explain the fact that incomes are up in RTW states while forced unionism is a proven job killer?

Campaigning Monday in Michigan as it stood poised to become the nation’s 24th right-to-work state, President Obama spoke the exact opposite of the truth to union workers at a Daimler Detroit Diesel plant in the birthplace of organized labor.

“What we shouldn’t be doing,” he told the small crowd, “is trying to take away your rights to bargain for better wages. We don’t want a race to the bottom. We want a race to the top.”

Yet looking at the hard numbers, becoming a right-to-work state is a direct line to the top.

According to Michigan’s Mackinac Center, using data taken from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and Bureau of Labor Statistics, private-sector, inflation-adjusted employee compensation in right-to-work states increased by 12% between 2001 and 2011 compared with just 3% over the same period in forced-unionization states.

These good wages came from good jobs. Employment in right-to-work states expanded 2.4% over the same stretch vs. a 3.4% decline in non-right-to-work states. Ironically, Obama is taking credit for jobs created in RTW states.

All Politics

According to the National Institute for Labor Relations Research, right-to-work states (excluding Indiana, which passed a RTW law in early 2012) “were responsible for 72% of all net household job growth across the U.S. from June 2009 through September 2012.”

This is why people vote with their feet and move to these states. RTW states experienced large population gains of 15.3% from 2000 to 2010, compared to 5.9% in non-RTW states.

Obama did get one thing right, though, when he said the bills that passed both houses of the Michigan legislature “don’t have to do with economics. They have everything to do with politics.”

The president who fought Boeing’s expansion in RTW South Carolina knows it’s all about his keeping union dues flowing into Democratic coffers and maintaining the plush lifestyles of the union leaders who support him.

Freeloading

Michigan law will now bar requiring workers to pay money to a third party, namely unions, as a condition of employment. This has given rise to the big lie that workers who refuse to join a union and pay dues will get a “free ride” enjoying the benefits of union representation without contributing to that representation.

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More Proof That Leftists Hate Freedom… As If We Needed More Proof

Michigan Right To Work Prompts Protest Against Freedom – Right Scoop

Michigan is not Wisconsin.

Right to Work legislation in Michigan doesn’t touch collective bargaining for private or public unions. Right to work legislation in Michigan doesn’t include firemen or police in any legislative bill. Right to work legislation in Michigan only makes it a personal decision by an employee to join or not join a union, and makes it unlawful for an employer to fire an employee for not joining or joining a union.

That’s it.

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So of course, the slack-jawed pea-brained Michigan opinion dupes in the media over-act the entire issue. All of a sudden, the middle class will cease to exist if somebody has the choice to negotiate his own deal. All of a sudden, Michiganders didn’t send a majority of Republicans to handle Lansing. All of a sudden, thousands of protesters practice modified Christmas songs to sing in front of the capitol because somehow allowing more freedom is the death knell for America.

Even some union-beholden intelligence-deficient Republicans vote against individual rights when push comes to shove. Mike Nofs, the Republican Senator who pushed for unionization of home-healthcare workers after taking money along with several workers from SEIU for his reelection campaign, said he didn’t vote for Right to Work legislation because,

“I think that in general, working-class workers will not benefit from this,” Nofs said.

He said he thinks workers already have the freedom to decide whether they want to take a job that’s unionized or not.

“When you go to apply for a job, you know it’s a union job,” he said.

“If you don’t like unions, don’t apply for a union job. There are plenty of other non-union jobs.”

Senator Tom Casperson has also said he is against the Right to Work, and though I haven’t talked with him on this issue, has mentioned to others that he believes unions create higher wages and that Right To Work would lessen those wages. Somehow. I guess.

But these fellows are wrong, just as is the predictable media and the fanatical demonstrators that will be bussed in on Tuesday. The protesters are undergoing vigorous training, preparing for clashes with police.

The unions are preparing for war because, quite simply, it is not right for people to be able to take on their own responsibility.

From the Detroit News: ”Humanize the situation. Be clear with your intentions. Introduce yourself,” national labor activist Lisa Fithian, of Austin, Texas, said through a megaphone. “They’re going to do everything they can to criminalize us.”

I’ll humanize the situation. When a man or woman works for someone else he or she can take what is handed out, or he or she can negotiate for his or her own future. Yes, wages are high because of unions, but they also increase the prices of goods which hurts middle America. The unskilled laborer hits a windfall when he makes comparable money and benefits as a highly-skilled specialized laborer.

If equality is what is sought, tell me of the equality between someone who never took the initiative to learn a craft and one who can build something and make it work. People are different, and in companies all across the nation people with special skills negotiate for their own pay. This legislation is about the right to be responsible for yourself.

Of course the argumentative union representatives complain that it would be unfair for people who refuse to join a union to be able to ‘freeload’ from the collective bargaining efforts of the union. Actually, they are more afraid that when a skilled laborer makes a better deal based on skills that he owns as much as he owns his body, that it will be the end of union power over man.

If men and women are allowed to create their own deal and depend on their own ability to succeed or fail, they won’t be “freeloading”. In fact it will cause people to learn skills, an acute need in America.

The only freeloading taking place is that of unions who launder dues into Democrat coffers at election time. If you are of the mind that you do not agree with the Democrat party and you do not wish to feed it, and you belong to a union, you can get out.

So as this whole issue gets overblown with civil disobedience courses being taught in universities and pastors railing at the pulpit against the so-called extreme nature of Right To Work, just remember, freedom isn’t free and slavery comes in many forms.

On Tuesday many people will object to freedom by protesting. In the near future, the unions will try to organize recall efforts for some or all of the Republicans who voted in favor of RTW, including the governor. We will be fed the impression that Republicans are anti-American Nazis and who knows what other drivel they will conjure.

If in America you are not allowed to be your own person, responsible and willing to be accountable to yourself and yourself alone, then there is no freedom anywhere.

A great American author, Eric Hoffer, wrote of mass movements and described the condition of those who do push for solidarity in the collective versus the freedom of man:

Freedom of choice places the whole blame of failure on the shoulders of the individual. And as freedom encourages a multiplicity of attempts, it unavoidably multiplies failure and frustration… Unless a man has the talents to make something of himself, freedom is an irksome burden. Of what avail is freedom to choose if the self be ineffectual?

It is hard work when one decides to be completely responsible but there are empowering side effects that create a confident, vibrant economy and society. By arguing and protesting against individual empowerment, those against Freedom to Work put themselves in direct conflict with the fabric of America.

Power to the people, individually.

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