The Cat Is Now Out Of The Bag –James Sherk Describes What Was Won in Walker’s War

Wisconsin’s fight against the public unions was yet another battle in the war to prevent government from remaining self-perpetuating; regardless of the outcome of those pesky things called elections. The victory Scott Walker won against the Wisconsin public employee unions has spawned similar efforts in Alabama, Idaho, Florida, Kansas, Oklahoma, Ohio, Nebraska, and Tennessee. James Shrek of National Review gives us an extraordinary look at how state public union reform is spreading like wildfire.


A commonly popular reform involves prohibiting the use of state payroll systems to transfer money to political organizations. Alabama has passed this law and is fighting the Alabama Education Association in court to keep it in force. Florida has bills to duplicate this reform in their state in the appropriate committees of their legislature. Kansas has passed similar legislation in one state house but not yet the other.

Tennessee and Idaho now consider legislation to limit the power of state education unions in other respects. Idaho has limited their bargaining power to salary and wages as well as prevented them from collecting dues via state payroll systems. They and Tennessee both are attempting to limit tenure and seniority based layoffs.

Ohio and Oklahoma work on legislation to reform both striking rights and arbitration practices for public unions. Nebraska seeks similar relief from binding arbitration.

What all of these plans have in common is the return of unelected and unaccountable governmental organizations to the control of elected civil authority. What each reform would accomplish would be to make democracy at the state and local level more important. It would render the daily usurpations of these various and sundry local bureaucracies less inevitable. The cat has just leapt forth from the bag in many locations. Scott Walker stood tall and won that victory. Now people all over America reap the benefits.



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