Unchanged: Americans Are Still Fleeing High-Tax, Forced-Unionism States With Good Reason

Like some sort of STD communicable disease, as they have for decades, Americans are still finding union-dominated states that force workers to pay unions (or be fired) very unattractive to live in and, as a result, are leaving by the droves.


According to an annual study conducted by the moving company United Van Lines, the top ten states that Americans are fleeing from continue to be those states that do not have Right-to-Work laws.

In fact, according to UVL’s study, the Top Ten states with the highest outbound traffic are forced-unionism states:

The top-five outbound states for 2012 were:

  • New Jersey
  • Illinois
  • West Virginia
  • New York
  • New Mexico

New Jersey (62 percent) displaced the outbound leader from last year, Illinois (60 percent) reclaiming the top spot for high-outbound migration that it held in 2010.

The Northeast is the most well-represented region on the high-outbound traffic list. In addition to New Jersey, New York (58 percent), Maine (56 percent) and Connecticut (56 percent) are also included.

Michigan (58 percent) and Wisconsin (55 percent) along with Illinois represented the Great Lakes region. Michigan fell to the No. 6 from the No. 4 spot it held in 2011. Previously, it had claimed the top outbound spot every year from 2006-2009.

Kentucky (55 percent) joined West Virginia (58 percent) as the only Southern states to appear on the high outbound list. New Mexico (58 percent) was the only Western state to appear on the list. [Emphasis added.]

A Self Perpetuating, Vicious Circle.


The fact that forced-union states have been losing taxpayers shouldn’t come as a surprise. The trend has been occurring for decades. Year after year, taxpayers are merely moving to where there is a more favorable climate–both literally and figuratively.

Typically, where there are laws giving union bosses the power to force workers to pay unions or be fired, union bosses also have the power to get politicians elected that will raise taxes and enact legislation that make the state unattractive to running a business.

As a result, when businesses find a state hostile to business, they either close or move–leaving fewer jobs in the state.

Naturally, like nomads, when there is no food (or work) to hunt for, people follow the jobs–or, like suckling pigs, end up being fed by the nanny state, which then imposes a greater burden on the remaining producers–individuals and business alike.

Forced Unionism Sucks Economic Life From States

For an example on how union dominance can destroy a state, one need to look no further than New Jersey.

Largely known more for its big hair, bad drivers, rude residents and more “colorful” citizens (like Jon Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Tony Soprano, The Situation and Snooki), New Jersey is the epitome of a state controlled by unions.


As such, despite GOP Governor Chris Christie, the relationship between union bosses and New Jersey’s Democrat politicians is tight.

As an example, State Senate President Steve Sweeney is a union representative and, prior to becoming a getting elected, Chris Christie’s predecessor, disgraced 1%-er Jon Corzine, had a very public relationship with the president of the state’s largest public-sector union that raised numerous questions during his administration.

Now, with the nation’s 4th largest debt among the states ($282 billion in the hole), life for New Jersey’s taxpayers is expensive to say the least–and it does not look like that fact will change anytime soon.

As the nation’s most densely populated state, New Jersey taxpayers are saddled with the highest property taxes in the nation, the Garbage Garden State is also rated among the highest business-tax states and falls to within the top ten of states that impose the highest tax burden overall.

[Conversely, Right-to-Work South Carolina imposes the least amount of tax burden on its residents.]

In fact, according to USA Today, the states with the highest tax burdens are all forced unionism states: Pennsylvania, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, California, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York.


Union Political Dominance: A Bi-partisan Economic Malaise

Although several of these states have elected Republican governors in recent years [*and Michigan will soon be a Right-to-Work state], several are still (or, until recently) controlled by Democrat legislatures. As a result, merely having Republicans in control is not enough to reverse the decades of the socialist Big Government policies, high taxes and deficits brought about by union influence.

In New Jersey’s case, for example, while moderate Republican Chris Christie has done reasonably well to balance budgets, New Jersey still sucks for taxpayers and businesses.

In fact, while it has risen from the 50th worst place in the nation to do business to 49th, it is only because New York has dropped to 50th.

As noted Bloomberg [the publication, not the mayor] noted:

[Christie’s] reductions in aid to schools and local governments, combined with cuts to property tax rebate programs, have pushed up the average property-tax bill by 20 percent from 2009, according to state data. New Jersey has the highest property taxes in the nation at an average of $7,759 in 2011, and residents making as much as $200,000 pay more in real estate levies than income taxes, according to legislative budget analysts.


Given that the best workers are to be found in Right-to-Work states, according to one survey, the fact that so many are fleeing the cold nanny states of the North to move to warmer Right-to-Work states, poses danger for those states on the receiving end of the exodus.

The danger for Right-to-Work natives, as well as the economic well-being for the Right-to-Work states receiving those fleeing forced-unionism states, is that the forced-unionism immigrants bring with them the same bad economic policies of their former home states.


“Truth isn’t mean. It’s truth.”
Andrew Breitbart (1969-2012)

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