California has the largest number of union members in the U.S. - about 2.5 million. Prop. 32 would end labor unions being able to collect dues for political purposes without a worker’s consent. Prop. 32 would have a devastating effect on labor unions’ political fundraising efforts. Voters rejected similar attempts at outlawing the use of members’ payroll-deducted funds for political purposes in 1998 and 2005 and should again.
This partisan initiative has been designed to wrest power from Democrats. Because Democratic candidates by a wide margin are politically favored by labor unions, cutting their fundraising ability will, in effect, significantly reduce the chances of Democrats winning political offices in California.
Millionaire businessmen, conservative PACs, and corporate special interests back the initiative. It would exempt the real special interests who have everything to gain by limiting the power of California’s labor unions - namely, themselves. After all, would special interests be spending millions for 32’s passage if it would essentially handicap their own political lobbying abilities as well?
Prop. 32 is union “busting.” This deceptive measure would not only strip California’s unions of their ability to draw a steady stream of campaign cash from their membership, but Prop. 32 also subsequently strips unions of their political clout, possibly leading to an advantageous statewide shift to Republican power.
It’s no coincidence that the California Labor Federation and the California Democratic Party are campaigning against 32. The power of unions and the political fate of Democrats are at stake on Nov. 6. Vote No.
David Briceno, Grass Valley