Grilling the GOP candidates on union laws, Right to Work Act

| September 28, 2011

The question is simple: Do you think the federal government should force millions of workers to pay union dues or be fired?

Every presidential candidate should answer that question.

We know where President Barack Obama stands. His record shows that he will use the White House as a tool to expand forced unionism.

In just under three years, Obama and his pro-forced-unionism allies nearly passed the card check bill to eliminate the secret ballot in unionization elections; passed the police and firefighter monopoly unionization law designed to force all of America’s first responders under union control; punished Boeing for starting up a manufacturing plant in a right-to-work state; and used the federal bureaucracy to restrict workers’ and small businesses’ ability to resist unwanted unionization.

And all over the country we’ve seen union militants go wild (storming government buildings, fleeing the state to avoid the law and intimidating elected representatives) whenever officials dared to rein in Big Labor’s costly power and privileges.

With our nation’s economy teetering, the stock market gyrating, unemployment rates nearing double digits and government spending and debt soaring, the last thing our nation needs is more disruptive strikes, escalating union violence and shuttered companies.

That’s why it’s vital Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul and every Republican presidential candidate unite in opposition to forced unionism and support every American’s sacred right to work.

To that end, the National Right to Work Committee has mailed each of the candidates a comprehensive survey asking them to pledge support for right-to-work and opposition to compulsory unionism. The survey asks them to publicly state their opposition to card check and the Police and Firefighter Monopoly Unionization Act. But of particular importance is Question No. 1, which asks each candidate whether they would support enactment of a National Right to Work Act.

The fact is, compulsory unionism is rooted in the sections of federal law that force workers to pay union dues as a condition of employment. The only way to cure that problem is to repeal those sections of federal law. The National Right to Work Act doesn’t add a single word to federal law. Instead it repeals the forced unionism federal mandate imposed on the states.

Forced unionism is a problem created by the federal government and the federal government must fix it. Don’t fall for the typical politician’s dodge of trying to foist the responsibility for fixing the problem onto some other branch of government.

And supporting the Right to Work Act 100 percent as a Republican presidential candidate shouldn’t be a tough call. Not only is it the right thing to do, it’s wildly popular. Nearly 80 percent of Americans oppose compulsory unionism.

Meanwhile, the candidates are vying for votes on right-to-work’s home turf. Of the early primary states, four of the five have popular right-to-work laws — while the remaining passed the law just months ago and is close to the margin needed to override the Democratic governor’s veto.

Stay tuned next month when we report back how the Republican candidates answered our survey. Hopefully, they will all stand up to Obama’s forced unionism agenda.

Offering voters a choice, not an echo, on the issue is likely to be a key step on the path to victory.

Mark Mix is president of the National Right to Work Committee.

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