State Rep. John Becker, R-Union Township, Clermont County

As we lovers of the Republic flood our Congressional representatives and U.S. Senators with letters and phone calls objecting to the horror show going on in our nation’s capital, busybody Republicans in the Ohio General Assembly are getting to work introducing some truly hurtful legislation in the form of “right to work.”

It’s time they get a taste of the letters and phone calls their friends at the national level are receiving.

As Plunderbund reported last night, state Rep. John Becker, of Union Township in Clermont County, has introduced House Bill 53, which would inflict so-called “right to work” laws on public sector collective bargaining groups in Ohio.

What this would do is undermine funding for these professional bargaining groups so that members can enjoy the benefits of the negotiations taking place on their behalf without having to pay dues associated with funding the organizations that undergo those negotiations. In the long run, this is a way to bleed public sector unions to death.

It’s a blatant attack on the viability of public sector collective bargaining in Ohio. If successful, it will lead to lower wages, fewer benefits and working conditions that are less safe for our police, firefighters, public works crews, department of transportation workers and every other public-sector employee.

It is part of the wider Republican agenda to render government service as ineffective and incompetent as Republicans claim it to be, thereby creating a justification for them to privatize and profiteer off of commonwealth assets and services.

“Right to Work” is built on a lie. No one is ever forced to join a union. Anyone who claims that is either misinformed or lying. In fact, the phrase “right to work” was coined in the 1920s by a racist named Vance Muse, an anti-semite who fought anti-child labor laws. The people who support “right to work” laws in 2017 are the heirs of the same swine that’s been assaulting the labor movement for nearly 100 years.

Voters have never passed a ballot measure enacting “right to work” because they know it’s wrong. In Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin, “R2W” laws were bullied through state legislatures by extremist lawmakers with the governors of those states signing the bills into law after previously having claimed they didn’t support them.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich said last year the Buckeye State didn’t need a “R2W” law “right now.” Term-limited with no presidential campaign in sight and a budget negotiation with the legislature looming, what song do you expect him to sing this year?

R2W makes communities poorer. The median household income in “R2W” states is $535 less per month than in free-bargaining states like Ohio. The fatality rate is 36 percent higher in “R2W” states because workers lose their voices, their freedom, their rights.

R2W is nothing more than a huckster attempt to by CEOs and corporate interests to end unions as we know them and stack the deck even more in their favor at the expense of the middle class. After 40 years of stagnating wages and exploding wealth and income inequality, the middle class can’t afford to pick up the tab anymore. The moneyed interests are selling a lemon, and we’re not buying.

The time for Ohioans to stand up is now.

Here is the contact information for Mr. Becker:

Representative John Becker
District 65

77 S. High St
12th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-8134
Fax      (614) 719-3966

And to make things easy on you. I’ll now include contact info for each of the 12 Republicans who signed on as co-sponsors, including state reps Hood, Brinkman, Dean, Thompson, Vitale, Goodman, Riedel, Roegner, Merrin, Antani, Zeltwanger, Keller.

Representative Ron Hood
District 78

77 S. High St
12th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-1464
Fax      (614) 719-3961

Representative Tom Brinkman, Jr.
District 27

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 644-6886
Fax      (614) 719-3588

Representative Bill Dean
District 74

77 S. High St
12th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-1470
Fax      (614) 719-0010

Representative Andrew Thompson
District 95

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 644-8728
Fax      (614) 719-6993

Representative Nino Vitale
District 85

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-1507
Fax      (614) 719-3978

Representative Wesley A. Goodman
District 87

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 644-6265
Fax      (614) 719-6982

Representative Craig S. Riedel
District 82

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 644-5091
Fax      (614) 719-3974

Representative Kristina Roegner
District 37

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-1177
Fax      (614) 719-6942

Representative Derek Merrin
District 47

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-1731
Fax      (614) 719-6946

Representative Niraj J. Antani
District 42

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-6504
Fax      (614) 466-6966

Representative Paul Zeltwanger
District 54

77 S. High St
12th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 644-6027
Fax      (614) 719-3967

Representative Candice Keller
District 53

77 S. High St
11th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 644-5094
Fax      (614) 719-6953

D.C. DeWitt is a writer and man of sport and leisure. He has also written for Government Executive online, the National Journal’s Hotline, and The New York Observer’s Politicker.com. He is the Associate Editor of The Athens NEWS in Athens, Ohio. DeWitt can be found on Facebook and Twitter @DC_DeWitt.

 
  • jr6020

    This may all be moot soon enough…if Trump get s his SC pick approved the Ca case will come back with a new group of plaintiffs and CB rights for teachers (at least) will be toast…

  • Spitfiremk1

    Is this dèjá vu? Didn’t they get the point 6 years ago?

  • buckeyewilloh

    This is what I fear…..

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