AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka condemned the actions of Gov. Rick Snyder and the radical Republicans in Michigan who announced today that "right to work" for less legislation would be pushed forward in the state's "lame-duck" session. Working families filled the Lansing Capitol building Thursday, outraged at the attempts to strip them of their voice in the workplace. Snyder is the latest in a line of extreme Republican governors, such as Scott Walker of Wisconsin, John Kasich of Ohio and Rick Scott of Florida, who are assaulting the rights of working families.
Earlier this year, Ohio Republican lawmakers pushed through legislation curtailing the state’s early voting period. Yesterday, a suit was filed in federal court to block the voter suppression law. Previously early voting had been allowed through the Monday before the election. The Republican bill cuts off voting on the Friday before Election Day for all voters except military personnel. In 2008, an estimated 93,000 votes were cast during the last three days of early voting in Ohio.
While anti-worker bills in state capitols across the country still threaten middle-class families, Republican state legislatures are beginning to second guess whether to continue pursuing their extreme agenda attacking working families.
Yesterday morning, the Republican-controlled New Hampshire Senate tabled HB 1677, the so-called “right to work” bill. This bill is the pet of Speaker Bill O’Brien, dubbed by a recent Concord Monitor editorial as a “self-drawn caricature of vindictiveness and power run [amok].” “Right to work” failed last year, and so far this year it has failed to muster a veto-proof majority.
What we're seeing in Ohio and other states that have faced attacks on collective bargaining rights is that attacks on working families are turning Reagan Democrats—and Republican union members like teachers, firefighters and police—against the tea party's extremist agenda.
The candidates in the Republican race to the presidential nomination may still be criss-crossing the country slamming each other for not being extreme enough, but there is certainly one thing they all agree on writes John Nichols—they hate unions!
Donald Cohen, founder and executive director of In the Public Interest, a national resource center on privatization and responsible contracting, sends us this.
It seems there’s no public service or piece of property that private companies are not eyeing as potential revenue streams. While funding anti-government think tanks like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), companies like Corrections Corporation of America, Waste Management, Maximus, Intuit, Laidlaw, Northrup Grumman, Koch Companies, Macquarie Capital Advisers, Pinnacle West, and UnitedHealthcare are hoping to use government as their candy store.
A recent memo from Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett’s (R) deputy chief of staff Luke Bernstein to other top staff and supporters says that in discussing Corbett’s first year in office, they should compare his “successes” to failures of other first-year governors, including Walker and Kasich.
From a midnight pajama party in a Madison bar to a rally in front of Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) Wauwatosa home, thousands of Wisconsin volunteers kicked off the official signature gathering period to put Walker’s recall before the voters next year. Recall forces now have 60 days to gather some 540,000 signatures.
Cincinnati Fire Fighters (IAFF) member Doug Stern says yesterday’s overwhelming rejection of Gov. John Kasich’s (R) attempt to eliminate collective bargaining rights of workers like firefighters, nurses, teachers, bridge inspectors and others shows:
[T]he citizens of Ohio spoke and they made it loud and clear that the focus of government should be on creating sustainable middle class jobs, rather than pushing a partisan political agenda.
Ohio voters today resoundingly overturned the anti-worker agenda pushed by Gov. John Kasich (R), Republican state lawmakers and outside interest groups, which took away the right of public employees to collectively bargain for a middle-class life.