On Friday, an Illinois Judge struck a blow for the American worker when he shot down Republican Governor Bruce Rauner’s anti-union order, which would keep fees paid by non-members from labor groups in an escrow account.
Judge Christopher Kolker of the St. Clair County Circuit Court told the political neophyte and investment banker exactly where he can put his executive order.
Rauner passed the executive order in February; it eliminated the “fair share” fees for the 6,500 some state workers who are represented by a union but haven’t decided to join – that is, the 6,500 free-riders who benefit from the union, but don’t pay dues.
Rauner also filed a lawsuit seeking to have the fees deemed unconstitutional, and during the legal process, wanted the money from the fees placed in an escrow account.
The unions decided to sue to overturn the act and free up the money.
Of the victory, Illinois ALF-CIO President Michael Carrigan said, “We’re pleased that all fair share agreements will now be honored while our legal challenge is pending.”
Rauner, however, has argued that reforms are necessary to heal the state’s financial problems, which include chronic structural budget deficits as well as the lowest credit rating and worst-funded pension system among the 50 states.
The new governor also hasn’t been silent regarding his problem with public labor unions and their political clout, a complaint that I’ll take seriously from any right-winger when they also complain about the political clout of Big Religion in addition to “Big Labor.”
[h/t and photo credit RS]