Tea Party (Koch Brothers) begin push for 'Right-to-Work' constitutional amendment for 2012
Fresh off the defeat of Issue 2, the ohio Tea Party movement and the anti-labor business group, Associated Builders and Contractors of Ohio, are announcing today that they are pushing to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot to turn Ohio into a “Right-to-Work” State.
From the Columbus Dispatch:
Despite those facts, and the notion that President Barack Obama, who has already latched onto Issue 2’s defeat and would count on labor’s support to win Ohio next year in his re-election bid, tea party sympathizers are moving forward with a workplace initiative intended to “allow workers to have the right to bargain individually” — according to a source with knowledge of the proposed amendment.
Note the deception already. They won’t come out and say it in the language that this is a proposal to constitutionally prohibit collective bargaining, but you can’t simulatenously have an effective to collectively bargain if you also have a right to individually bargain. The law of physics apply in politics, too– two things can’t occupy the same physical space. By creating a constitutional right to “individually” bargain, then collective bargaining becomes an infringement of that “right,” and therefore, the laws that permit it become subject to a constitutional challenge.
Why can’t these folks just draft the proposal for what it really is “a constitutional amendment banning collective bargaining.” Why the deceptive language? If they honestly thought the people of Ohio shared their political views, why be so indirect about it.
By the way, if this passes, will an individual have the right to strike without fear of losing their job or being replaced? How does that work?
In 1958, Republicans tried to pass a constitutional amendment to make Ohio a “right-to-work” State. It didn’t turn out too well for them:
O’Neill, Bricker and most every other Republican lost along with right-to-work. Voter turnout exploded. More than 3.2 million Ohioans cast ballots, far in excess of previous non-presidential years. In 1954, for example, just 2.5 million Ohioans had voted.
[The current ORP Chairman Ray C.] Bliss provided this analysis:
“The defeat of many of our Republican candidates is directly attributable to the placement of the right-to-work issue on the Ohio ballot this year.
“The proposed amendment provided a live issue through which the labor leaders were able to turn out a huge…labor-Democrat vote. During the past year, I repeatedly warned the proponents of this issue that this defeat would be the possible consequence.
“They choose to ignore my warnings. I estimate that an additional 200,000 additional labor-Democrat voters went to the polls Tuesday because the issue was on the ballot.”
From 1958 until this year, Republican governors and legislative leaders have avoided another attack on unions as direct at Senate Bill 5 is perceived to be.
The Ohio Republican Party was nearly wiped out of existence that year.
Kasich, who had previously stated publicly that he had no desire to see Ohio become a “right to work State,” appeared to be noncommittal given his spokesman’s comments on the proposal:
This morning, Kasich spokesman Rob Nichols said “job creation is Gov. Kasich’s top priority and we need to continue to work hard to create a jobs-friendly climate in Ohio.
“Right now is the time to pause and take stock of the best way to do that and we are not ready to discuss any specifics at this point,” Nichols said.
Kasich needs to stand up to the Tea Party and tell them, in no uncertain terms, “No.” If someone on the right doesn’t scuttle this here and now, you are going to see Obama and Brown easily win and you could see GOP Congressional and state legislative candidates get wiped out.
If you didn’t hear the people of Ohio on Tuesday, then the Tea Party is going to hear them loudly, and they’re not going to like what the voters will have to say. Josh Mandel does not want to be on the ballot with a radical anti-choice “Personhood” Amendment that social conservatives couldn’t even get passed in Alaska, Mississippi, or Colorado, and a “right-to-work” amendment that he has to take a position on and have to choose between his political base, or the majority of Ohioans. I mean, his support for Issue 2 is politically toxic enough as is.
If I didn’t know any better, I’d swear the Tea Party was really a shadowing Democratic front group designed to boost Democratic turnout.
If the Tea Party wants to have another labor ballot, and do it in 2012, just a year after Issue 2 was soundly defeated, I say: