Union lawyer: "It should be "a civil right to join, or not to join, a labor union."
4/2/11, "As Wisconsin's Battle Heads to Court, Unions Try to Oust a Judge," John Fund, Wall St. Journal
"Why are the unions and their liberal allies so desperate to block Mr. Walker's reforms? It's all about the money. Unions can't abide the loss of political clout that will result from ending the state's practice of automatically deducting union dues from employee paychecks. For most Wisconsin public employees, union dues total between $700 and $1,000 a year, much of which is funneled into political spending to elect the officials
- who negotiate their contracts.
Union officials recognize what can happen if dues payments become voluntary. Robert Chanin, who was general counsel of the National Education Association from 1968 to 2009, said in a U.S. District Court oral argument in 1978 that "it is well-recognized that if you take away the mechanism of payroll deduction, you won't collect a penny from these people, and it has nothing to do with voluntary or involuntary. I think it has to do with the nature of the beast, and the beasts who are our teachers . . . simply don't come up with the money regardless of the purpose."
There is evidence to back up his fears. In 2001, Utah made the collection of payments to union political funds optional, and nearly 95% of public school teachers opted not to pay. In 2005, Indiana GOP Gov. Mitch Daniels limited collective-bargaining rights for public employees, and
- today only 5% of state employees pay union dues.
Even Ms. Kloppenburg, the favored candidate of unions, doesn't like paying mandatory dues. In 2009, she responded to a survey by saying the Wisconsin Bar Association should become "voluntary." Then it would be "better situated and motivated to be more transparent, be more accountable, be more responsive." She went on to say that government attorneys such as herself "do not benefit as much as private attorneys from the non-reimbursed dues that we pay." In an interview on Friday, Gov. Walker told me that dues money and union power is "the real issue" in opposition to his reform. "After it became clear we were serious, they couldn't wait to throw their members under the bus by saying they could live with higher contributions for health and pension benefits," he said.
- "The issue they wouldn't bend on was the power collective bargaining gives them on dues.""
7/28/10, "Open-borders/SEIU caravan to Arizona: You read it here first," SEIU Union dues used to pay for busing protesters to Arizona
via American Thinker