Senator Scott OelslagerThe Massillon Independent is reporting that State Senator Scott Oelslager (R-North Canton) has publicly announced that he will not support SB 5 to repeal collective bargaining for State employees.

“I will oppose the bill and will vote no if it does come to a vote,” he said.“I believe there has to be a balance between management and labor and the give and take of the collective bargaining process allows that balance to take place.

“Throughout my career I’ve been a strong supporter of collective bargaining for that reason,” he added.

This is a significant development in that this is the first time any Republican has publicly announced their opposition to a major policy initiative of the Kasich Administration.

But it’s mostly symbolic, not surprising at all, nor a sign that SB 5 isn’t certainly likely to pass.  The Republicans outnumber the Democrats in the State Senate 23 to 10.  So, even in the face of unified Democratic opposition, Senate President Tom Niehaus (R-New Richmond) can pass whatever he wants while releasing up to six of his most politically vulnerable to vote with the Democrats to make them politically immune from what passes the Senate.

Oelslager was just elected to the State Senate from the Ohio House (he’s been ping-ponging from chamber to chamber since 1985), so he wouldn’t have to face voters until 2014.

Oelslager’s district isn’t likely to change much from redistricting, and SB 5 would be political suicide for him to support given the blue collar nature of his district.  Oelslager gets to act of political necessity while portraying it as an act of political courage, maverick-ness, to the folks back home for “standing up to his own party.”  Oelslager was endorsed by the AFL-CIO and SEIU District 1199 in his most recent election.

The actual reality is Oelslager is on the coveted Rules Committee, Judiciary Committee, is the chair of the Health, Human Services & Aging Committee, and on the very Finance Committee hearing SB 5.  A seasoned legislator like Oeslager likely didn’t do this and put those committee assignments at risk without getting the blessing of the Senate President.  A tell that a Republican has truly gone off the reservation is that their committee assignments are quickly pulled.

If that doesn’t happen, you know that Oeslager’s vote was released by Niehaus because he’s got votes to spare.

This won’t be the last of the Senate Republicans to likely get released either.  Remember, Niehaus can afford to lose six members of his caucus (slightly over a quarter of it) and still pass anything without much worry if he’s confident in his vote counters.

Here’s some of the other Republican Senators whom I suspect may be released from supporting SB 5:

  • Freshman Senator Frank LaRose (R-Akron)
  • Senator Tom Patton (R-Strongsville) (up for re-election next year)
  • Senate Majority Leader Jimmy Stewart (R-Athens) (up for re-election next year.)
  • Freshman Senator David T. Daniels (R-Greenfield)
  • Freshman Senator Bill Beagle (R-Tipp City) (defeated Sen. Fred Strahorn (D-Dayton) in 2010).

Now, you’ll notice with Oeslager, the Republicans could release every one of these Senators and still pass SB 5.

Still, it’s noteworthy that this bill is going to have bipartisan opposition and potentially may only pass narrowly by a one-vote margin.

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  • Real Get Real

    Amazing. I saw Mark Weaver, GOP strategist now employed by the police and fire unions, on the WCMH4 Spectrum. He mentioned two points worth noting:

    – When questioned on the transparency of JobsOhio, he stated that we should not have concerns about accountability because KASICH IS RUNNING THE ORGANIZATION. No kidding.

    – When asked about the Collective Bargaining HB5, he stated that police and fire deserve special consideration over other unions. Remember, he is now employed by them. Someone should remind Weaver that the unions all hang together or they will all hang separately.

    Is the FOP and firefighters officially adopting Weaver’s position which is essentially playing into a GOP divide and conquer tactic? Certainly self interest is a factor albeit short sighted, but as other unions are undermined, the safety forces will be next. Or did Weaver speak out of turn and go too far?

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  • Anonymous

    The FOP has traditionally operated independently from the other unions on matters of public policy, in my opinion, this isn’t anything different.

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    ModernEsquire you say at the end of your post:
    “Still, it’s noteworthy that this bill is going to have bipartisan opposition and potentially may only pass narrowly by a one-vote margin.” Did you forget the old saying ” Army of one.”
    If all the armies of one band together– we may just have a force — maybe a force to reckon with.

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    sad isnt it — the old adage” whats in this for me” Weaver must be saying that over and over….
    and Kaisch is not running the organization — hes railroading it– odd isnt it when one is feathering one’s own nest –transparentcy goes out the window– BUT let the rest of it do it and see how fast we get accused of being a crook ……

  • Real Get Real

    Yes, the FOP and firefighters seemed to have taken the bait. At this point, the good cop, bad cop routine between Jones and Kasich can be handled by slowing the process down. Educating the union members first as many have no idea what is going on. Second educate the public on what the schools would look like with a bunch of pissed off teachers. The GOP is trying to shove this through before people realize what is going on and hope no one notices.

    Since the bill will not solve the budget crisis and only lead to school cuts and unrest, perhaps it would be better to make Kasich put it in his budget. At least then there is no deniability for the 2012 elections – particularly given the weak GOP field being considered (Donald Trump and Ron Paul – really?). Kasich alone could deliver Ohio to Obama more than any Dem could.

  • Sluggo

    My members are pissed. It turns a collective bargaining law into one that prohibits collective bargaining. What kind of collective bargaining law sets up union agency and then prohibits negotiating salaries and health insurance? This will go to referendum repeal. If it’s in the budget, it’s severable. Or you could pass a ballot issue law to revise the ORC.

  • Anonymous

    In Wisconsin, Gov. Scott Walker is being called a “dictator” by his opponents. An article written by John Nichols that appears in The Nation, has this line, “A governor who seeks to eliminate labor rights is not acting as a “fiscal conservative.” He is acting as a dictator.” Does this sound familiar?

  • Thank You for opposing senate Bill 5!!!!!

  • THANK YOU for stepping up and opposing Senate Bill 5 !!!!!

  • Wietro

    Congrats to this senator for standing up for the working men and women of this state. The State of Ohio is not in trouble because of the labor unions, it is proven that the right to work states are more in debt then the others.

  • Anastasjoy

    Sluggo, are the unions really looking at a ballot issue? If this passes, i would like to see that happen. I will volunteer!

  • Kellybottsmith

    Jim Hughes announced he would not support the bill. He isn’t on your list. Doesn’t that make 7?

  • Anonymous

    Not necessary. Remember, I was just putting out a list of other prospective no votes. So, we’d need to sweep the rest of my list (or find another five) to defeat the bill.

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  • Robert Alfonso

    the bill is in ICL.

    i can’t wait for this bill to pass and listen to all the union members freak out.

  • Fotogirlcb2002

    I just finished a letter to him along with others– Schiavoni says he isnt either
    and sent a list for us to contact……
    I admire those that have the guts to go against

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  • Nyse

    Out of the last 35 years, 24 of them have been Republican governors, and a heck of a lot of State employees were hired under Republican governors, I’m sure we will remember this next election

  • Angela Dec

    I oppose also Senator! I hop0e SB5 wins the majority in Ohio. This lunacy needs to stop! I am so sick of people with entitlement issues that so not necessarily do anything to deserve it! To work for automated increases without merit, job performance reviews, and extra perks needs to change! This is not done in the private sector for the most part, why does it need to continue in Ohio Gov.? I am so tired of people being promoted solely on seniority and no other relevant factors! These qualified individuals are being shut out because they do not have seniority, but they have other relevant factors to the position and still get shut down! I hope this changes for the better of all people. To just be continually “given” things without earning them is preposterous! Thanks for supporting SB5!


    Shame on all the unions when they let Reagan break the air traffic controllers. This opened the door for anti union positioning by self serving politicans. All union must stick together. If they beat the unions in SB5 Auto Workers hold onto your a.. because you will be next. And then the big strike will happen and the economy will go even deeper in the dumper. Don’t expect the firefighters and police to walk out with you… Collective Bargaining law prohibits us from striking no matter how bad the situation….and most of us wouldn’t if we could because we love our profession where we risk our lives every day.

  • tigerguy

    This is a comment from someone who had a state union job. Yet what she is forgetting to tell you is that she was fired for trying to run someone over in the parking lot. 100% true story.

  • Anonymous

    How do you know who posted that comment?

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  • Dsl6676

    Thank you!!

  • Mays7777

    Thank you for stepping up and doing what is right for the State and for America at this time!

  • JB

    I’m new. Who and how do I voice my objection to SB5? I don’t know how to write
    a senator and do I write to more than one?
    Help, and thanks.
    I’m a loyal union member

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  • Anonymous

    How reassuring – “… Oelslager was endorsed by the AFL-CIO and
    SEIU District 1199 in his most recent election.”

    goals of the neo-democrats/socialists/communists/and other wealth
    stealers, such as mentioned unions seem to be the same. SEIU, ACORN,
    AFL-CIO, Democrat Socialists of America, Progressive organizations,
    all support federal government control, rather than private,
    CAPTIALISTIC/Wall Street & Main Street control.

    biggovernment-com Obama Lawyer with SEIU, AFL-CIO Connections
    Sidesteps Ethical Complaints Aug 17 2010 – “…In a letter
    addressed to Attorney General Eric Holder, the National Right to Work
    Legal Defense Foundation (NRTWF) points out that Craig Becker, who
    now sits on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) as a recess
    appointee, has declined to recuse himself in multiple cases involving
    his former employers, most notably, the Service Employees
    International Union (SEIU) and the AFL-CIO…”

  • Anonymous

    AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka: An Ugly History of Violence and

    Labor in the Driver’s Seat July 15, 2009

    Is Obama Resurrecting Nazi Fascist Economics? January 23, 2011
    “Don’t look now, but Obama again sails into uncharted waters by
    naming Jefferey Immelt, CEO of General Electric, head of his jobs
    committee. Imagine, if this was announced by George W, liberals
    would have screamed like fat kids at diet camp. But the national
    response is light applause and yawns, proving once again—it’s
    not what is done, but who does it—that matters to leftists…”

    http://apathetic-usa-com/ ***** EXPLAINS MUCH OF THE CORRUPTION IN

    michellemalkin-com/2010/01/07/green-jobs-seiuunion-jobs/January 09,
    2010 “Green
    Jobs” = SEIU/Union Jobs

    Orrin Hatch Utah concerned by NLRB Nominee Craig Becker

    2010 02 Controversy Over Nlrb Nominee Craig Becker Heats Up

    Stimulus bill funds ACORN despite its history of corruption

    Time to crack Obama’s ACORN “Presumptive
    presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.)’s “most
    questionable tie is to a leftist organization called ACORN,”…in
    1995, then gop gov. jim edgar refused to implement the federal “motor
    voter” law. allowing voters to register using only a postcard and
    blocking the state from culling voter rolls, he argued, could invite
    fraud. mr. obama sued on behalf of the association of community
    organizations for reform now, and won. acorn later invited mr. obama
    to help train its staff; […]..”

    ACORN watch: Welcome to Miami September 9 2009

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