A bill that would allow public employee unions to deduct union dues from employees’ paychecks without their authorization passed the House of Representatives Monday. But not without a fight from House Republicans. Rachel Case from the Washington House Republicans reports from the state Capitol..
CASE: House Bill 2751 would allow unions to automatically deduct dues from a public employee’s paycheck, unless that employee provides written authorization against it. Proponents say the bill would ensure workers are contributing their fair share to the union, whether or not they are members. But Ellensburg Republican Representative Matt Manweller says the bill essentially sanctions theft of a public employee’s paycheck.
MANWELLER: “In what aspect of our lives is that the default preposition? I cannot think of any other law – I cannot think of any other social situation where the assumption is you can come into my private personal stuff and just start taking what you want, unless I tell you no.”
CASE: In June, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected rule whether it is constitutional to fire public employees for refusing to financially support a labor union. It’s widely believed the court could rule against unions, in which case public employees would not be required to pay union dues to keep their jobs. Legislative Republicans noted Monday the bill will be the unions’ attempt to still collect dues, even if the court decides against them. Manweller said workers should have the final say of who gets their paycheck.
MANWELLER: “Don’t touch my paycheck. I get up in the morning. I kiss my wife goodbye. I hug my kids goodbye. I drive to work. I put in the sweat, the blood, the effort. It’s mine. It’s not ours. It’s mine!”
CASE: The bill passed along party lines, 50 to 48, with Republicans voting no. It now goes to the Senate for further consideration. Rachel Case, Olympia.