Supreme Court hears right to work arguments

September 4th, 2014 at 3:01 pm by under Jim Shella's Political Blog

The battle over Indiana’s right to work law made its way to the state Supreme Court Thursday where a Justice suggested that it is anti-union.

The emotions behind the right to work battle produced giant demonstrations two years ago.  It’s a law that says no worker can be forced to join a union.

But when the state Solicitor General asked the Supreme Court to overturn a ruling that found the new law unconstitutional, the argument was pretty basic.

“There is a need to protect rights of individuals in the workplace who don’t wish to join a union,” said Thomas Fisher.  “That’s what this is about.”

And a union attorney was just as matter of fact.

“The law does not allow members only representation,” said Dale Pierson, who represents the International Union of Operating Engineers.  “That’s the bottom line.”

It was Justice Steven David who sparked reactions when he said, “Let’s cut to the chase.  This is certainly anti-union legislation, ok, or certainly not pro-union legislation.”

“I was impressed that finally someone in the public arena such as Justice David today said that this was an anti-union policy,” said David Fagan of the International Union of Operating Engineers.

But while union members declared a small victory. a right to work advocate pointed out that Justice David’s commentary may not matter in the end.

“The Supreme Court issue is not the wisdom of policy that the legislature’s decided,”said Milton Chappell of the National Right to Work Foundation.  “It’s the constitutionality of that choice.”

A Supreme Court decision is weeks away.

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