Today, the Supreme Court is taking up a case that could decide the fate of liberal-controlled public sector unions around the country. At stake is whether the millions of non-union state workers around the country can be forced to pay union dues.
Unions have become a de facto wing of the Democrat Party. In 2014, the top three most politically active unions in the nation, Fahr LLC, ActBlue, and the National Education Association, gave over 99% of their $180 million in political contributions to Democrats. Unions take money from employees’ paychecks and provide liberal Democrats with enormous political campaign contributions.
This trial may result in a serious blow to the Democratic money machine.
In 1977, the Supreme Court determined that non-union employees can be forced to pay union dues to help pay for collective bargaining expenses.
This week, a group of non-union teachers in California stated that being forced to pay the unions is a violation of their freedom of expression. They no longer want to be strong-armed into paying union organizations to fund candidates which they do not support.
Currently, non-union employees who do not want to pay the full dues must fill out an “opt-out” form each year. This reduces, but does not eliminate, their union dues. The group bringing the case to trial want the process amended so that non-union employees will have to “opt-in” to pay full dues. There have been reported cases of employees being harassed or threatened when attempting to opt-out of paying the full union dues.
Unions have long been on the decline. In 1954, 35% of American workers belonged to a union. As unions became more politicized and corrupt, that number began to fall. Powerful unions bankrupted many companies in the 1970’s and 1980’s (think steel companies and airlines). Today only 6% of private sector workers are unionized.
However, 35% of public sector employees still remain unionized. This is because states don’t have to go bankrupt like private sector companies, because they can raise taxes. This has resulted in many state workers making absurd salaries, and thousands of state employees getting six figure retirement pensions before turning 50.
The public sector is the last bastion of power of unions, which is why this case terrifies liberals. In the months ahead, be prepared to hear lots of speeches from Democrats about how hard-working state employees are being abused by the Supreme Court.
Rest assured, their impassioned pleas have nothing to do with hard working teachers, and everything to do with their campaign coffers.