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Missouri’s right-to-work bill passes House committee

By   /   April 4, 2013  /   17 Comments

BURLISON: Making Missouri a right-to-work state would help the business climate.

BURLISON: Making Missouri a right-to-work state would help the business climate.

By Johnny Kampis | Missouri Watchdog

The newfangled right-to-work bill pushed by Republicans has passed a Missouri House committee.

House Bill 77, which sponsor Rep. Eric Burlison, R-Springfield, now calls his “Freedom to Work” bill, passed the House Committee on Workforce Development and Workplace Safety this week by a 7-3 vote.

The legislation would prevent employers from requiring workers to join a union to get a job, a controversial issue across the nation, and in Missouri, where it has passed twice and been vetoed both times by Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon.

The Show-Me State could become the 25th in the union to pass a right-to-work law.

“It’s time for Missouri to promote and protect worker freedom by ending our status as a forced union state,” Burlison said after the bill made it out of committee. “The bill does nothing to prevent unions from existing in Missouri, but instead places a focus on protecting the rights of workers to freely choose their associations.”

Rep. Bill Lant, R- Joplin, the chairman of that committee, said he believes employers look closely at this issue before deciding in which states to locate.

“Job growth in (right-to-work) states has risen at a rate of 2.5 times faster than forced union states, a distinct advantage in attracting new employers who create the jobs Missouri families want and need,” Lant said.

Burlison’s bill will now go before the House Rules Committee before being discussed on the House floor.

The Senate has shown less willingness in addressing the issue.


Johnny Kampis is National Watchdog Reporter for Watchdog.org. Johnny previously worked in the newspaper industry and as a freelance writer, and has been published in The New York Times, Time.com, FoxNews.com and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. A former semi-professional poker player, he is writing a book documenting the poker scene at the 2016 World Series of Poker, a decade after the peak of the poker boom. Johnny is also a member of Investigative Reporters and Editors.

  • Missouri is going to end up like Wisconsin. I think the law sucks. Wake up people.

  • Wages will go down and you will be working for nothing.

  • steve

    Are you kidding? Wages already have ‘gone down.’

  • aaronbbrown

    Yeah let’s pass a bill that allows corporations to turn Missourians in the slaves that can be hired for $3 hour so they can compete with the Undocumented workers that Took their jobs at Burger King

  • aaronbbrown

    What the story doesn’t mention is that all that job growth created in right to work states are extremely low-paying jobs, jobs a single person can’t live on let alone support a family with, Jobs were you still need food stamps and public assistance, in other words jobs that are subsidized by federal taxpayer dollars.

  • It’s about time.

  • cylh

    Can you provide statistics to back up this claim, please?

  • The fascism continues.

  • We just passed RTW in Michigan. If you don’t want the businesses in Missouri, send ’em to us ! Right-to-Work does not prevent unions from organizing, or prevent workers from joining one if they want; it just gives individual workers the freedom to decide!
    What are unions afraid of? I thought Missouri was the “Show-Me” state …

  • Linda Uhlmann Krider – you don’t seem to know what happened in Wisconsin. Gov. Scott walker was RE-ELECTED by a larger margin than he was originally elected, because his reform (not RTW) helped balance the budget and lower taxes by “limiting what government workers were able to bargain for …”
    That’s different from RTW, which simply gives workers (public and private) the right to choose whether or not to join and financially support a union.
    Linda, I think you have just “been told” to say RTW is bad, but really don’t know what you’re talking about …

  • Not true Linda. Workers in RTW states EARN MORE when cost of living is taken into effect. Also, RTW simply gives workers the Freedom-to-Decide whether or not to join a union, instead of forcing them to pay dues …

  • Aaron, you’re lying and I’m sure you know it. How does giving workers the freedom to choose whether or not to join a union ” turn Missourians in the slaves that can be hired for $3 hour”
    Really Aaron? $3 an hour …? (Hmmm, minimum wage is $7.40.) Why are you lying Aaron? You’re not trying to scare people …, are you? lol
    This is how the union bosses operate; scare tactics, intimidation and lies …. that’s union thuggery. I know, I’m in the UAW.

  • aaronbbrown likes to tell lies, to scare people who don’t know the facts!

  • hasj_girl

    I live in Missouri and my husband works bridge construction. He doesn’t work for a Union company but the companies around here have to pay on par with union companies. His pay in Missouri can range widely depending on the county he is working in. He has also worked for companies that work outside of Missouri and his pay is 5-15 and hour less. I’ve read the right to work laws. I don’t know why the pay drops so much but it is a FACT to all that work in the construction industry, that if Missouri becomes right to work, they WILL get paid less. Union companies are a total pain and they dominate the construction work in the cities around here. They have even been known to damage equipment that belongs to non-union companies But we need to find a way to deal with power high unions without taking money out of the pockets of employees.

  • better than spam

    more jobs at LOW wages. you have to work three jobs, never see your spouse or have a relationship with your children and you still can’t afford health insurance. RIHGT TO WORK STINKS!!!

  • better than spam

    my son in law lost his construction job in a right to work state because he couldn’t speak enough Spanish to work with all the illegals his company hired

  • Growth by 2.5 times cause it takes 2.5 times a dumbass making pennies to replace a true professional. If these people were qualified they could get a good union job. Missouri will still spend the same amount with or without rtw. It’s bullshit!