August 08, 2018

After Greitens Unions win Big in Missouri

Timothy Birdnow

Labor unions in Missouri have won a huge victory in defeating prop A, also known as Right to Work, in a referendum held on the law, which was passed by the Missouri legislature and signed by former Governor Eric Greitens.

CNN has the story:

"The AFL-CIO and other major labor groups had set their hopes and considerable resources on the effort to overturn Missouri's law by winning a "no" vote for Proposition A.
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"The defeat of this poisonous anti-worker legislation is a victory for all workers across the country," AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said in a statement Tuesday night. "The message sent by every single person who worked to defeat Prop. A is clear: When we see an opportunity to use our political voice to give workers a more level playing field, we will seize it with overwhelming passion and determination."

End excerpt.

Labor unions outspent defenders of the law by a margin of five to one. There were endless commercials full of lies telling people their wages would be cut if it passed (it was already state law) and they ran a very effective commercial featuring an older white man claiming to be a veteran who said he fought for freedom and th Right to Work was not freedom, that good jobs and benefits were! It was pure liberal hogwash, but it was effective, especially with low information voters.

Big Labor was most likely at the core of the attacks on Missouri Governor Eric Greitens, and had the Missouri GOP stood with Greitens when the politicized indictments were handed down Greitens likely would not have resigned - and this measure likely would not have failed.

CNN characterizes Missouri as deep red which is not the case; Missouri has always been a purple state, a very pro-labor union state. The GOP has done well in recent years, but that was because the Democrats have abandoned the traditional working class base who have voted Republican - primarily for the weaker, more liberal Republicans. When the GOP had a supermajority in both Houses of the legislature they couldn't pass a right to work law (they could have overridden the Democratic Governor's veto). There was always a healthy fear of the power of big labor here.

I was of the opinion that moving the referendum from the midterm to the primary was a mistake, but I assumed the leaders of the GOP - who are paid to know this stuff - knew better. Once again I have had my belief that the GOP is run by rank amateurs verified. They moved the vote to August, a time where Republicans are busy with the kids going back to school and the vacation season finishing up. This hurts Democrats less, because so many are not working or can easily take off. Certainly the labor unions could get their people off early to get to the polls, while the proponents of the measure were stuck behind desks or on vacation. And the labor unions could concentrate all their efforts on this one proposition, while in the general they would have had to fight in multiple states.

This was not the disaster the media will try to spin it as, but it was an unnecessary loss by the GOP, largely self-inflicted. It really is too bad; the state of Missouri will continue to bleed jobs to states where people are not forced to join a union (and support the destruction of their own country with their dues) If the Republicans had any sense they would immediately pass another right to work law and if necessary hold a second plebisciteBut I doubt they have the courage.

If they would have backed Eric Greitens this would have turned out differently. They emboldened the unions. Surrender on one field leads to defeat on others. The unions would have had to waste time and money and gotten nothing for their troubles (as happened with Scott Walker in Wisconsin). But victory begets victory, and defeat defeat. Our side seems incapable of learning that simple face. Whether they liked Greitens or not it was imperative they defend him. They are reaping what they sowed.

Posted by: Timothy Birdnow at 09:07 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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