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Senate GOP makes a power play on Right-to-Work Amendment
Minnesota Public Radio ^ | March 8, 2012 | Tom Scheck

Posted on 03/09/2012 7:50:44 AM PST by Parmenio

Republicans in the Minnesota Senate took an unusual step today by moving a bill from one committee to another before the first committee voted on the measure. The bill in question is a proposed constitutional amendment would allow voters to decide whether workers could voluntarily avoid paying union dues.

Sen. Dave Thompson, R- Lakeville, requested that the so-called "right-to-work" bill be moved from the Senate Jobs and Economic Growth Committee to the Senate Judiciary Committee. It's a simple procedural move, but it upends the typical Senate process that allows policy committees to debate and vote on bills that fall within their jurisdiction.

Several union lobbyists said Thompson made the move because there weren't enough votes in the Jobs Committee to approve the bill.

Thompson said he believes the Judiciary Committee was a better place to consider the bill, and that there would be plenty of debate.

"I don't have the least bit of concern that the public won't have an opportunity to learn about this and provide all of the input that they'd like to provide in the judiciary committee," Thompson said. "I feel that the public will in no way be short-changed by going to this committee."

The Senate voted 34-30 in favor of Thompson's request to move the bill. Sen. Joe Gimse, R-Willmar, switched his vote from no to yes to reach 34 votes. Gimse said that he switched his vote to help move the amendment along.

"They needed my vote to see the bill progress on to the Judiciary Committee," Gimse said. "My protest was heard but I want it to go to the Jobs Committee also and follow the legislative procedure."

Gimse said he hopes the bill goes back to the Jobs Committee at some point. Gimse said he wasn't sure how he would vote on the amendment.

Every Democrat and Sen. Jeremy Miller, R-Winona, voted against it.

Sen. Jim Metzen, DFL-South St. Paul, said he was disappointed that Jobs and Economic Growth Chair Geoff Michel was willing to give up control of the bill and worried about the precedent that the vote set.

"Let's find the time and do it the right way," Metzen said. "I think we're going down the wrong path here and if we continue to do this it's a terrible slippery slope."

The state's labor unions have been actively working to defeat the proposed constitutional amendment.

If the House and Senate both pass it, the question would be put to the voters this fall.

UPDATE: The Senate Judiciary Committee will hear the bill on Monday, March 12 at 8am in Room 15 of the State Capitol.

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Government; US: Minnesota
KEYWORDS: minnesota; righttowork; rtw; unions
Good news from Minnesota. The Senate GOP caucus did the right thing, despite weak knees on the part of a few Senators. The comments under the article contain some typical lib lies and distortions, but after all, this article is on the Minnesota Public Radio site.
1 posted on 03/09/2012 7:50:52 AM PST by Parmenio
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To: Parmenio

The GOP should do this nationwide at the same time and make the unions spend all their money and scattering them through out the nation. Soros will have to spend more of his money trying to help the left. Maybe they will back off of Scott Walker for a while. These guys need to be kept busy.

2 posted on 03/09/2012 7:55:07 AM PST by Linda Frances (Only God can change a heart, but we can pray for hearts to be changed.)
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To: Parmenio

One more step towards defunding the Left.

3 posted on 03/09/2012 8:23:49 AM PST by MSF BU
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To: Parmenio

I agree the comments were unintentionally funny. Though it’s important to remember how steadfast the Democrats are in opposing any form of democracy, fairness, or common sense that does not benefit them politically.

4 posted on 03/09/2012 8:24:05 AM PST by yefragetuwrabrumuy
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To: yefragetuwrabrumuy
I remember when Louisiana passed it's Right to Work Law. There were pickup trucks all over the state reading: "Right to Work for less." At first I couldn't figure what side they were on.
5 posted on 03/09/2012 8:28:17 AM PST by sportutegrl (What does that even mean?)
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