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HomeIllinois NewsNational right-to-work law introduced in Congress Wednesday

National right-to-work law introduced in Congress Wednesday



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Congressman Steve King of neighboring Iowa

WASHINGTON – A bill that would repeal federal laws that make "forced dues" the default labor law was introduced Wednesday by Congressman Steve King of Iowa and Congressman Joe Wilson of South Carolina.

Thus far, no Illinois lawmakers have signed onto the effort. Illinois and Minnesota are the only two states in the Midwest that have not adopted right-to-work provisions.

“Today, around 80% of Americans overwhelmingly believe that every worker and their employer should have the power to negotiate the terms of their employment,” said King. “Unfortunately when Congress enacted the National Labor Relations Act in 1935, this right was taken away from the people and Americans were forced to pay union dues and abide by the union’s rules just to get or keep a job.

As early as 1947, Congress tacitly admitted that this concept of "monopoly bargaining" does indeed violate the rights of workers. As a result, they allowed states to "opt-out" if they passed Right to Work laws while making ‘forced unionization’ the default.

"Twenty-seven states have now done so, effectively mitigating the negative impact of this misguided federal labor law," King said. "However, the fact remains that Congress created the problem in the first place, and it is Congress’s responsibility to correct it. The National Right to Work Act will succeed in doing so by simply listening to the majority of American workers by erasing the forced-dues clauses in federal statute — without adding a single letter to federal law.”

“As a long-time advocate of South Carolina’s right to work law and the Employee Rights Act, I am grateful to introduce national right to work legislation with my colleague, Congressman Steve King,” said Congressman Joe Wilson. “At least 80 percent of Americans are opposed to forcing employees to pay dues as a condition of their employment, and our bill would protect workers by eliminating the forced-dues clauses in federal statute.

“Right-to-work states, like South Carolina, have seen first-hand that job creation and economic growth comes from expanded freedoms. We need to expand common-sense reforms, like those in the National Right to Work Act to protect American workers and create jobs,” King said.

To view the original text of the bill, click here.


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