August 14, 2005


Prop. 75 Could Weaken Clout of Unions: The measure would require public employee labor groups to obtain consent from members before spending dues on political campaigns. (Jordan Rau, August 14, 2005, LA Times)

Though the initiative is not part of Schwarzenegger's "year of reform" effort to upend Sacramento's traditional powers, it is widely viewed as the measure that could have the greatest repercussions in the Capitol should it pass.

Unions representing teachers, prison guards and local and state workers are among Sacramento's most influential political players. They have up to now been able to direct large sums into political campaigns, thereby propelling sympathetic legislators into office, influencing ballot fights and winning substantial raises and pension increases.

Democrats, who control the Legislature and hold most statewide offices, have been the beneficiaries of union support much more often than Republicans.

Lessening the political clout of California's public employee unions — among the most powerful in the nation — would represent a substantial symbolic victory for conservative activists across the nation.

Advocates for Proposition 75 contend that union leaders have used member money to promote tax measures and liberal issues that many conservative union members do not support and that are peripheral to the goals of collective bargaining.

Breaking public employee unions is one of the last battles left to complete the rout of liberalism. Which is why this is the case Democrats should be asking Judge Roberts about, Judge Blocks Homeland Security's New Work Rules (Associated Press, August 14, 2005)
A federal judge has blocked the Bush administration's plans to revise personnel and pay rules at the Department of Homeland Security, saying the government-wide change of labor rules fails to protect workers' right to bargain collectively.

The decision Friday by U.S. District Judge Rosemary M. Collyer is a victory for the National Treasury Employees Union and other labor groups. They argued that the proposal, which was set to be implemented Monday, would have taken away their bargaining rights on issues such as employee assignments and technology use.

Labor groups have filed similar challenges against a Pentagon plan to revise Defense Department labor rules.

This is an "enormous and critically important win for the rights of federal employees not only in DHS but in all federal agencies," said Colleen M. Kelley, president of the NTEU.

In the ruling, Collyer said the new rules exceed the scope of federal law, citing in particular provisions giving a department official unchecked authority to change negotiated positions in a collective-bargaining agreement.,/blockquote>
It's a simple question of whether elected officials or bureaucrats govern the country.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 14, 2005 6:21 AM
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