By Mike Thayer
Elected Democrats are upset that a Republican bill to change how collective bargaining for public sector employees happens is going to pass.
Why are the liberal heads upset? Because a change to the current way collective bargaining is done for public sector employees in the state of Iowa will mean a big drop in political contributions to those elected officials. Unions tend (more like always) to back Democrat candidates. And if this bill gets signed into law by Governor Branstad - and it looks like it will - Unions won't be able to bully workers into paying for political agendas like they used to.
Republicans are pushing a bill that changes the current collective bargaining rules for 'public sector', a.k.a. government workers in the state of Iowa. First and foremost, the bill eliminates the longtime practice of gathering union dues through payroll deductions (mandatory in a union shop). That's a big deal to both sides.
For Democrats it means their faucet flow of automatic political campaign contributions is going to be restricted moving forward. What used to be mandatory unions dues taken through payroll deductions - automatic cash flow for union/political agendas - will now be voluntary for employees. Moving forward, employees will decide how/if they will pay union dues, it won't be forced on them, what a novel idea! Don't believe the Democrat claims that this is somehow about how the new rules 'hurt' middle class jobs and wages..... Make no mistake, this is REALLY about Democrats being upset about their political cash flow. The liberal-minded claims that this bill hurts the middle class, that this bill somehow hurts the children (in the case of teacher's unions), or that this bill will somehow adversely effect public safety are completely bogus!
For Republicans, this new rule also means a reduction in Democrat cash flow...... It's easier to run a political campaign when you know the opposition isn't so flush with cash. So do you believe the Republican claims that current collective bargaining rules are not fair to Iowa taxpayers, that they don't have a voice when it comes to having a presence at the collective bargaining table? That argument has merit, under current collective bargaining rules, no, Joe Taxpayer doesn't really have a voice at the table, it's government head vs. union head..... That's a no-win situation for the average taxpayer..... But do know what the true motivating base factor is in this legislation, for BOTH sides.... It's about the political cash flow.
In addition to putting a stop to mandatory union dues collections through payroll deduction, the bill also alters how unions are certified. Unions will now have to be re-certified prior to each new contract negotiation. Long term, this puts more power back into the hands of employees, rather than union heads. Democrats don't like that. If employees choose not to belong to the union, the union loses power and influence politically...... The union, the political agenda, the politicians, lose cash flow.
The bill also changes arbitration rules. Unions involved in public safety will sustain current law, to be able to bargain for not only base wages, but for insurance, hours, vacations, holidays, overtime compensation and health/safety concerns as well. Why public safety gets a pass is illogical, one would think there should be consistency in rules for all public sector unions..... Chalk that one up to political gaming.... For non public safety unions, they will be able to bargain for base wages, but issues such as insurance, hours, vacations, holidays, etc., must be agreed upon before bargaining can begin. That just makes sense. Both sides know what the agenda is, before negotiations begin.
With just about anything political, it's really about the money, NOT what politicians are telling you in window dressing fashion......