Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Indiana set to pass right to work law
The Republican Governor Mitch Daniels claims that he will sign the state right to work law as soon as it comes to him. A vote in the Indiana Senate could happen on Wednesday. On Monday a Senate committee voted 6 to 1 to approve the bill and send it to the Senate.
Although such legislation is always termed "right to work" legislation it really has nothing to do with a right to work. A better term would be a "free rider"bill since it allows employees to work without paying any union dues. The costs faced by a union in negotiating a contract and defending workers cannot be recouped by forcing employees covered by a contract to pay dues.
Democrats presented amendments but Republicans refused to let them even be debated. When the bill passes into law Indiana will become the 23rd state to have right to work legislation.
Democrats say that the governor wants the legislation passed before a Super Bowl game next weekend. At protests on Monday some protesters had chanted: "Super Bowl, Super Rally" However many labor leaders fear that a protest at the Super Bowl festivities would be counter productive. For more see this article.
Most businesses support right to work legislation as it makes union organising more difficult and lessens the power of workers. The U.S. is one of the least unionised of advanced capitalist countries.