Slow-Growth Northeast Needs the Right to Work

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from National Right To Work Committee,

All across America, Right to Work states have long benefited from economic growth far superior to that of states in which millions of employees are forced to pay dues or fees to a labor union just to keep their jobs.

One key index that illustrates Right to Work states’ wide economic advantage is civilian household employment as reported by the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL). This is a broad jobs measure that includes the self-employed and contractors as well as workers on employer payrolls.

The 22 states that had Right to Work laws on the books for the entire period from 2006 to 2016 enjoyed overall household employment growth of 8.1% during that decade.

Meanwhile, aggregate employment growth in the 24 states that still lacked Right to Work protections for employees as of the end of last year was less than half the Right to Work average.

Not surprisingly, total 2006-16 employment growth in the nine states of the Northeast — the only one of the four U.S. Census Bureau regions of the country without any Right to Work states — was slower than in any other region.

Among Northeastern States, New Hampshire Now Closest To Right to Work Passage

Despite all the evidence of Right to Work laws’ economic benefits, of which Indiana’s recent manufacturing rebound is but one example, and despite the fact that nearly 80% of Americans who regularly vote support Right to Work as a matter of principle, passing a law banning forced union dues is never easy.

Unions that file federal disclosure forms rake in a total of roughly $21.7 billion a year in (mostly forced) dues and fees, government grants, rents, interest, and other revenues. And union bosses deploy a huge share of the money for politics and lobbying.

“If freedom-loving citizens are to counter successfully the might of the union political machine and prevail upon their elected officials to adopt a state Right to Work law, they must first be mobilized,” said Mr. Mix.

Among the nine states of the Northeast, New Hampshire is now the closest to being able to overcome entrenched Big Labor resistance and pass a Right to Work law.

This January, Right to Work advocates’ efforts bore fruit when a majority of state senators defied Big Labor bosses by approving S.B.11, a measure upholding the employee’s individual right to get and hold a job without being forced to join or bankroll a union.

Since Gov. Chris Sununu had successfully campaigned on the Right to Work issue in 2016, union officials’ only remaining chance to stop Right to Work was the state House of Representatives.

Unfortunately, on February 16, largely because Speaker Shawn Jasper (R-Hudson) failed to deliver his then-222-member caucus for ending compulsory unionism, S.B.11 narrowly failed in the House.

“The February 16 defeat of S.B.11 on the House floor was undoubtedly a setback for the Granite State,” said Mr. Mix.

“Due to this setback, New Hampshire’s economic malaise — reflected in the 15.2% decline in the number of its residents, aged 35-54, between 2005 and 2015 — seems destined to continue for a while.

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