Unions and the Right to Step On Other People

By Mario Loyola, National Review Online

Today President Obama argued that right-to-work laws are not about economics, just politics: Proponents of right-to-work laws just want to “take away your rights to bargain for better wages and working conditions.” Once again, as liberals did with the HHS mandate and as they do in so many other contexts, the president is talking about “rights” that are not universal ones, but special rights that come only by excluding others and making others pay out the nose for the rights.

In the first place, what the president says is simply false. In right-to-work states, people are perfectly free to form unions and and “bargain for better wages and working conditions.” But in right-to-work states, you also have the right to bargain for those benefits even when you are not a union member. If you want to work for a company that employs union labor, you have a right to join a union or not join it, and the union cannot exclude you from employment.


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