Skip to comments.Latest state to curtail PEU bargaining rights is … Massachusetts? Union Bosses Hardest Hit.
Posted on 04/27/2011 7:12:23 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
When Governor Scott Walker took steps to limit the power of public-employee unions and return the power over policy to the voters of Wisconsin, many of us knew that the newly-elected Republican would start a wave of similar efforts in other states. However, it’s safe to say that one place we didn’t expect to see that wave break early on Plymouth Rock. Not only has the Massachusetts state House passed a new law barring all PEUs from collective bargaining on health care, it passed by a veto-proof majority — because Democrats pushed the bill:
House lawmakers voted overwhelmingly last night to strip police officers, teachers, and other municipal employees of most of their rights to bargain over health care, saying the change would save millions of dollars for financially strapped cities and towns.
The 111-to-42 vote followed tougher measures to broadly eliminate collective bargaining rights for public employees in Ohio, Wisconsin, and other states. But unlike those efforts, the push in Massachusetts was led by Democrats who have traditionally stood with labor to oppose any reduction in workers rights. …
Under the legislation, mayors and other local officials would be given unfettered authority to set copayments and deductibles for their employees, after the 30-day discussion period with unions. Only the share of premiums paid by employees would remain on the health care bargaining table.
Yes, you read that right. Democrats in Massachusetts admitted that Scott Walker had the right idea all along. In fact, the Commonwealth believes that the ability to manage health care coverage will save taxpayers $100 million in the next budget year.
And in another nod to Wisconsin, the House held their vote at 11:30 last night, hoping to avoid the kind of demonstrations that Wisconsin Democrats encouraged in Madison.
AFL-CIO president Robert J. Haynes is furious that the politicians he bought turned out to be rented instead:
These are the same Democrats that all these labor unions elected. The same Democrats who we contributed to in their campaigns. The same Democrats who tell us over and over again that theyre with us, that they believe in collective bargaining, that they believe in unions. . . . Its a done deal for our relationship with the people inside that chamber.
The Senate takes up the bill next, and Deval Patrick has to decide whether he’ll sign it. Even if this law doesn’t pass, it still vindicates everything Scott Walker did in Wisconsin, and it paints the fleebaggers as even more craven than ever.
It's a window-dressing act though. No way in hell the MA pols upset the union applecart.
On a different note. I heard on the radio this morning that the Mass house passed a bill that food stamps debit cards could not be used to buy tobacco or alcohol.
Why on earth would public employees need to bargain for health insurance when they have RomneyCare?! /sarc
One of the limits to the Alinsky model is that the “pick a target, freeze it, polarize it” thing only serves to hamstring you if your opposition is broad-based. If you check out the left-wing blogs, they are all still ratcheting up the “SCOTT WALKER IS EEEEE-VILLL” meme. Meanwhile, the legislation that Walker is identified with is passing all over America. The Alinsky model is great for winning battles. Wars, not so much.
It transfers the power to mayors and “other officials”, including the governor. Basically, it makes mayors and town managers more powerful and more “deserving” of union support. The unions are still in the driver’s seat. In Massachusetts, as in the rest of New England, town government is by town meeting, where votes are public and they are dominated by public employees. The day to day operation of town government is run by a hired official, the town manager, who is chosen by the board of selectmen, not by popular election. The selectmen are elected by popular vote, but no one ever remembers or knows how they vote when hiring a town manager. Election of selectmen generally depends on which church they attend and how easy their names are to remember or spell. I do not recall one selectman ever running as a member of a political party.
The other fact is that in New England towns, the biggest budget item is invariably the schools and school boards are more or less independent of the board of selectmen, though budgets are set by the selectmen. Typically, the elections for school board are dominated by teachers’ unions and parents organizations, neither of whom have cost control as a priority.
Again, more political theater.
Again, more political theater.
Got that one right. This is intended as a headline for the masses.
It will die in the Senate.
Boston.com has a good article and about a million comments on this story.
Nothing’s going to change (for the better) in MA. If the GOP couldn’t win one state wide election in a GOP year, what does that say (granted Baker was horrible, but some of the other candidates like Polito and Connaughton were really good)?
Write MA off, just like RI and CT and the rest of the “hopelessly stuck on stupid” “Blue” states.
Like I've said in the past, the last schmuck to leave MA can shut the Cape Wind powered CFL off.
The Firefighters union announced that they are no longer donating to the Democrat Party, that they are moving to union rights issues, instead. It’s a ploy to avoid the claim that the unions buy the support of Democrats with their dues money. They are trying to avoid the move by various states to end the automatic deduction of dues from state workers pay checks.
You have to realize that for some of the SEIU (contract workers) the state collection of dues is the only way that the union would ever get paid. They are collecting dues from home day care workers in WA state. If the state didn’t collect the money, the workers would NEVER pay it.
The Democrats know that Deval Patrick will not sign such a bill. It’s just a show.
Spot on analysis!!!