“House Democrats are leaving the state rather than vote on anti-union legislation, The Indianapolis Star has learned.
A source said Democrats are headed to Illinois, though it was possible some also might go to Kentucky. They need to go to a state with a Democratic governor to avoid being taken into police custody and returned to Indiana.
The House was ca(lled) into session this morning, with only two of the 40 Democrats present. Those two were needed to make a motion, and a seconding motion, for any procedural steps Democrats would want to take to ensure Republicans don’t do anything official without quorum.
With only 58 legislators present, there was no quorum present to do business. The House needs 67 of its members to be present….
Today’s fight was triggered by Republicans pushing a bill that would bar unions and companies from negotiating a contract that requires non-union members to kick-in fees for representation.”
The provision being pushed in Indiana may not sound like much at first, but it’s the crux of most labor law. Supporters call it a “right-to-work law,” because it allows non-union workers to get jobs at so-called union shops. Opponents call it a “right-to-work-for-less” law, because it makes it much harder to organize and sustain a union. If non-union members are allowed to enjoy the benefits of a union contract without paying union dues, many will choose to do so, in time weakening the union both financially and politically.
Georgia is one of 22 states in the country with a “right-to-work law.” Indiana Republicans are trying to make their state number 23, as are their counterparts in Ohio.
I guess it all makes sense, given how unions played such a central role in causing the near-collapse of the nation’s economy.
– Jay Bookman