(Image source from: NPR)
Missouri voters have overwhelmingly rejected a right-to-work law passed by the state's Republican-controlled legislature that would have prohibited mandatory union fees - a resounding triumph for organized labor that spent millions of dollars to defeat the measure.
With about 98 percent of the precincts reporting, the "no" vote on Missouri's Proposition A, which supported the law, was running about 67 percent, with nearly 33 percent voting "yes."
In 2017, the right-to-work law passed Missouri's Republican legislature and was signed by then-Gov. Eric Greitens. However, union organizers gathered enough signatures to keep it from going into effect pending the results of a statewide referendum. The rejection of Proposition A effectively kills the law.
"It's a truly historic moment," said Mike Louis, president of the Missouri AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations). "Tonight we celebrate, but tomorrow we're getting back to work. We're going to take this energy and momentum and build more power for working people across Missouri."
Presently 27 states and Guam have laws permitting employees in private-sector unionized workplaces to opt out of union membership and union fees.
As The Associated Press notes, "At issue are so-called fair-share fees, which are less than full dues but are intended to cover unions' nonpolitical costs such as collective bargaining. Unions say it's fair for people to pay the fees because federal law requires them to represent even those employees who don't join. But supporters of right-to-work laws counter that people should have the right to accept a job without being required to pay a union."
The Dispatch reports that even deep-red St. Charles County saw nearly 72 percent of voters rejecting the measure.
Missouri went to a great extent for Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election and the rejection of the right to work.
By Sowmya Sangam