A majority of Americans, 53 percent, approve of labor unions, yet more than seven in 10 say they would vote for a so-called “right-to-work” law, according to a newly released Gallup poll.
The contrast shows how organizations such as the National Right to Work Committee, backed by corporate political advocacy groups like ALEC, the Koch Brothers and the John Birch Society, have succeeded in using misleadingly-named right-to-work laws to drive down union membership.
Now in 24 states, right-to-work laws allow non-union workers to receive the benefits of collective bargaining off the backs of their dues paying union co-workers. The result is often weaker unions, less power at the bargaining table and poorer contracts.
Part of the right-to-work misconception is in its name – which implies it’s a good thing for American workers.
Conservatives have long argued that the laws make states more favorable for business, yet ignore the fact that these jobs are often low-wage positions with few, if any, benefits. Research shows that states with right-to-work laws have lower wages and incomes, less job-based health insurance coverage, higher poverty and infant mortality rates, less education investment and higher rates of death on the job.
Despite this, extremist conservatives continue to push their anti-worker agenda all around the country.
“The right-to-work debate is ongoing in states like Ohio and Wisconsin, and New Mexico and Kentucky may adopt these laws if Republicans win control of the legislatures in those states in the next election,” the report says.
Click here to read the entire Gallup poll.