Labor unions aren’t like other private organizations. They have lobbied for and gotten powers and privileges that no other groups have, or should have. (For a comprehensive study of those powers and privileges, I suggest Professor Morgan O. Reynolds’ book.) Crucially, they can compel workers to pay them money if they want to keep their jobs. Then they use much of that money for political activities that fortify the unions’ position.
That compulsion, however, is under legal attack.
At the end of its recently completed term, the Supreme Court announced a number of the cases it has decided to hear when its new term begins in October. One of those cases is Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association. The key issue is whether public workers represented by unions, including teachers and professors, should be free from having to pay dues that go towards politics unless they affirmatively choose to opt in and agree to pay
As matters now stand in California and other non-Right to Work states, unions only have to allow dissenting workers the opportunity to opt out of paying dues for things other than collective bargaining and related matters. Naturally, the unions have contrived to make it as hard as possible for anyone to do that.
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