Skip to comments.Wisconsin unions see ranks drop ahead of recall vote
Posted on 05/31/2012 5:36:47 AM PDT by sgtyork
Public-employee unions in Wisconsin have experienced a dramatic drop in membership -- by more than half for the second-biggest union -- since a law championed by Republican Gov. Scott Walker sharply curtailed their ability to bargain over wages and working conditions. Now with Mr. Walker facing a recall vote Tuesday, voters will decide whether his policies in the centrist state should continue -- or whether they have gone too far. The election could mark a pivot point for organized labor. Mr. Walker's ouster would derail the political career of a rising Republican star and send a warning to other elected officials who are battling unions. But a victory for the governor, who has been leading his Democratic opponent in recent polls, would amount to an endorsement of an effort to curtail public-sector unions, which have been a pillar of strength for organized labor while private-sector membership has dwindled. That could mean the sharp losses that some Wisconsin public-worker unions have experienced is a harbinger of similar unions' future nationwide, union leaders fear. Failure to oust Mr. Walker and overturn the Wisconsin law "spells doom," said Bryan Kennedy, the American Federation of Teachers' Wisconsin president. Wisconsin membership in the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees-the state's second-largest public-sector union after the National Education Association, which represents teachers-fell to 28,745 in February from 62,818 in March 2011, according to a person who has viewed Afscme's figures. A spokesman for Afscme declined to comment.
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Wis ping list - filling in for AfraidfortheRepublic
FTA — “Public-employee unions in Wisconsin have experienced a dramatic drop in membership — by more than half for the second-biggest union . . .” KABOOM!!! This made my day. Drive the union thugs into the sea!!!!!
Oh, pull out the tissue.
What is the membership declining? Were their jobs eliminated, or did they opt out of the union?
Is Wisconsin a “right to work” state?
even though they have left the union, will they not still vote democRAT in the election?
Good question, but one thing's for certain... it spells a shrinking pool of $$$ for the union bosses.
I suspect most just opted out of union. Dues are approx. $100 per month depending on union, location, contract,etc. Everyone is trying to save $ these days...
No, Wisc. is not a RTW State. Maybe the Gov. will push to become one after next week’s election!
I work with and know several union members who DO NOT pay their union dues, still the union will protect them when the chips are down. Some have told me, I have better things to do with my money”. Heart warming isn’t it?
Didn't the law also stop the state from forcing employers to take union dues out of the employees paychecks as with tax withholding?
Thanks sickoflibs. Have a great day, all.
If the Repubs can hold out and maintain control til the end of the year, the Dem party in WI will be broken beyond easy recovery. The key recall race is Walker -- Half the state Senate comes up for re-election in November anyway.
Afscme? Do capital letters cost more?
I’m pretty sure it is due to a change in union dues collections. The state no longer collects for the unions; hence union members are getting their dues back in their paychecks. I kind of doubt they are going to give that money up voluntarily now, hence the drop in membership.
I opted out. I’d rather give the dues to a charity of my choosing, where they’ll actually do some good.
Thanks for filling in!
As the local radio guy just said...the best part is all the tissue they’ll be using over the next few weeks trying to deal with this will fund the one company they despise the most:
KOCH BROTHERS (Georgia Pacific) LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Walker has said he will not push for RTW and the State Senate is too squishy to try it.
As much as I and many others in this State want it, it may well be the “bridge too far”. Maybe if he strengthens his position with a second term in 2014 and the recall rules are changed, but until then I think he’ll tread slowly.
Just hope Gov. Walker and other 4 can hold on Tuesday. That is a big victory in itself. Last poll I read seems to indicate they all will win...
THAT’S gonna leave a mark! Maybe we’ve finally killed the beast? Hope so!!
I always thought union dues were intended for use in making the workers environment better in some way. Dues should never be used for political purposes. I would never belong to a union. JMHO.
In theory, we can request the return any portion of the dues spent on political activities. In reality, when I asked for them, I was told my chapter didn’t spend any money on political activities. Technically, that was correct. WPEC is a subset of AFT. WPEC doesn’t, but AFT certainly does! Had I stayed in the union, I was planning to save all the mailers from the union telling me who they wanted me to vote for, and would have filed another claim. Oddly enough, even though I opted out, I’m STILL getting those mailers!!
I just do no understand opposition against right to work laws by anyone other than union bosses and the politicians they own. Why woould Joe or Jane worker support forced unionzation? It is so anti-freedom.
If this is the case, then WI must be a “right to work” State; huh?
“What (Why) is the membership declining? Were their jobs eliminated, or did they opt out of the union?”
I believe that formerly (pre Walker) union mbrshp was mandatory, annual dues being paid out of state-appropriated funds, apart from funds appropriated to pay salaries and benefits, by state employees using state offices and facilities. Teachers and state employees now pay union dues personally, at their personal discretion.
(I’m a former Univ. of Wis. faculty mbr, non-union position, not currently resident of Wis.; perhaps a current Wis. resident will correct the foregoing as needed).
Why should they put down their bongs and go vote when they know that the residents of the cemeteries will each be voting? Three times.
With the new law they can op out so they did. The last poll I saw of public employees, they support Walker 52%
“Some have told me, I have better things to do with my money. Heart warming isnt it?”
They do and it is.