Bruce Starr admits that he'd push Oregon to be anti-union "right-to-work" state

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

The Northwest Labor Press broke a big story yesterday afternoon. Senator Bruce Starr (R-Hillsboro) - who is running for Labor Commissioner - was speaking to right-wing radio mouthbreather Lars Larson on the air.

Larson asked him if he'd push for Oregon to become a "right-to-work" state. Starr's response?

Yes. The pure answer and clear answer is ‘yes,’ Lars, I would. I’m pro-choice in that regard. Let’s let folks choose who they want to associate with, and again, I think a policy like that would create a lot more economic opportunity in our state and a lot more jobs, make Oregon a much more attractive place to do business.

As John Mohlis of the Building Trades Council told the Labor Press:

You can’t be for right-to-work and be pro-labor. ... Supporting right-to-work means you are anti-union.

Right-to-work, most common in the southern U.S., means that workers can benefit from the wages and benefits negotiated by a union without paying their share of the union's costs in obtaining those wages and benefits. (Note that workers are never required to join a union. But they can, in non-right-to-work states, be required to help pay for the services that the union provides them.)

Starr's been trying to win labor support in this race, telling the Building Trades two weeks ago:

We’ve had a good relationship over the last 10 years. We are friends. I’m not walking into enemy territory here today.

But not any more. Cue Mohlis, in the Labor Press:

It’s not in sync with what I thought his views were. ... It shows more urgency to re-elect Avakian. It’s certainly not in our best interest to have a labor commissioner who is anti-labor.

'Nuff said. Go support Brad Avakian here.

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    Full disclosure: My firm built Brad Avakian's campaign website.

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    "Note that workers are never required to join a union. But they can, in non-right-to-work states, be required to help pay for the services that the union provides them.)

    Federal labor law does not require unions in right-to-work states to "provide services" to non-members. If the union wishes to provide such services, that should not compel non-members to pay for them.

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      False. The union has a legal obligation to represent all workers, even those who do not pay their fair share. The members who do pay end up covering the costs of their freeloading co-workers.

      Having fewer paying members erodes the negotiating power of the bargaining unit.

      Wages are lower, safety standards are weaker, and health care and retirement benefits are diminished in Right to Work for Less States.

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        Jennifer, please cite what law or rule requires unions to represent all workers.

        The US Supreme Court unanimously held in Retail Clerks v. Lion Dry Goods (1962) that member-only contracts are enforceable in federal court.

        Unions are required to represent non-members only if they negotiate as “exclusive bargaining representatives.” The almost always try to do that, but they shouldn't then be able to turn around and claim that non-members are "free riders," when they didn't want union representation in the first place.

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        Jennifer: Still waiting for your source......

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    Right to Work for Less is an attack on workers that keeps rearing its ugly head:

    Pres. Harry S Truman, 1947:

    “You will find people saying that they are for the so-called right to work law, but they also believe in unions. This is absurd. It’s like saying you are for motherhood but against children.”

    Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., 1961:

    “In our glorious fight for civil rights, we must guard against being fooled by false slogans, as ‘right to work.’ It provides no ‘rights’ and no ‘works.’ Its purpose is to destroy labor unions and the freedom of collective bargaining. We demand this fraud be stopped.”

    Etc. etc. etc...

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    Right on Jennifer, right to work for less, with less security and less recourse against abusive bosses.

    Labor Creates All Wealth -- An Injury to One is an Injury to All!

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    We need protections for workers. But why add the baggage of people from other countries? There are some awesome programs, already, to help people in those other countries---for example CEMEX Corp. has helped 270,000 families into homeownership in Central America. Google "Patrimonio Hoy."

    Do we have that here? You have to be in a certain bracket to qualify for Habitat homes in the US, and even then those folks don't really know how to build, anyway. Also, in Mexico, the gov't has provided homes for as low as $11,000 US, and that is in the city where they have services---comparable in size, at least, to a small condo. When recent immigrants to the US apply for benefits do they declare family property holdings back home? Those people are not as broke as you think, or they wouldn't be able to pony up the thousands to get here. More likely they want US dollars to invest back home. What do we get? US workers just get more competition and the cost burden of an international welfare system. ID theft, visa fraud, tax fraud ---I guess are not considered violent crimes meriting deportation. Correct me if I am wrong.

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