Quantcast
Connect with us

Iowa lawmakers champion bill to limit public-sector unions

Published

on

Iowa lawmakers considered legislation on Wednesday to limit the powers of public-sector unions to negotiate for state and local employees, restrictions similar to those enacted in Wisconsin and Michigan despite huge protests.

Republicans in Iowa have gained an important advantage in pushing for legislation to rein in public-sector salaries and benefits after gaining control of the state Senate in last November’s election. Republicans also control the state House of Representatives.

ADVERTISEMENT

Iowa Republican Governor Terry Branstad supports the legislation, which if approved, would see Iowa join Wisconsin and Michigan in imposing restrictions on public-sector unions in the past decade. Branstad said the measure was needed to save money for the state.

Many Southern states have long limited collective bargaining by public-sector workers.

Union members protested the measure at the state capitol on Tuesday, according to local media.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees has said the measure, supported by the billionaire Koch Brothers’ political spending group Americans for Prosperity, would gut collective bargaining rights.

Ross Eisenbrey, a vice president at the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute, said the measure was in line with efforts by conservative lawmakers to overrule minimum-wage increases adopted by cities and push for lower wages for construction workers on state projects.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Iowa measure would lift mandates that require the state and local governments to negotiate with public-sector unions on how much employees receive in health benefits, according to a text of the legislation.

Instead, mandated negotiations would center on wages. Public safety employees, including police and firefighters, would be exempted from those provisions.

The legislation also would make it easier to dismiss certain state and local employees, including teachers, who are deemed by their supervisors to be poor performers.

ADVERTISEMENT

The measure was heard by House and Senate subcommittees on Wednesday, according to the legislature’s website. It was not immediately clear when the state House and Senate might vote on the measure.

Branstad told a news conference on Tuesday that state employees covered by public-sector unions typically pay $20 a month for their health coverage, leaving taxpayers on the hook for over $22,000.

ADVERTISEMENT

“This is wrong and it’s certainly out of whack with what everybody else in the state has to pay,” he said.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by Peter Cooney)


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Meghan McCain leads The View hosts in brutal attack on Nikki Haley: ‘Disqualified for national office’

Published

on

Addressing former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley's attempt to walk back her comments defending the flying of the Confederate flag, conservative co-host Meghan McCain took the lead on "The View" and hammered the former South Carolina governor -- agreeing with co-host Sunny Hostin that Haley disqualified herself from ever being president.

With host Whoopi Goldberg off for the day, McCain asked to speak first, and jumped all over Haley who recently wrote an op-ed attempting to explain away her comments made during an interview with right-wing host Glenn Beck.

Continue Reading

Facebook

Dem lawmaker drops the mic on GOP for claiming Trump was really worried about Ukraine ‘corruption’

Published

on

One of the Republican Party's defenses of President Donald Trump has been that he only withheld military aid to Ukraine because he sincerely wanted to see whether the country was doing enough to fight internal corruption.

But Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) on Thursday tore this claim to pieces by showing how Trump himself is constantly mired in corruption in both his own businesses and even his personal charity.

While debating articles of impeachment against Trump before the House Judiciary Committee, Raskin mocked the idea that the man who has paid out tens of millions of dollars to settle fraud claims has a sincere commitment to fight corruption.

Continue Reading
 

Facebook

GOP’s Louie Gohmert shredded for spewing out a ‘nonsense’ definition of crime during impeachment hearing

Published

on

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) insisted that President Donald Trump couldn't have committed a crime because Ukraine hadn't realized it was the victim of a shakedown scheme.

The Texas Republican, a former prosecutor and judge, claimed he had never sent anyone to prison without the victim realizing they had been the victim of a crime, and social media users swiftly fact-checked his claim -- which wasn't even an accurate assessment of the impeachment evidence.

"Having been a prosecutor, I've defended some cases, I've been a judge, i have sent a lot of people to prison," Gohmert said. "But I have never sent someone to prison where the victim didn't know or figure out that they were a victim. That's extraordinary to hear, that you can commit a crime like bribery or theft or -- and the victim never knows, never figures out there's a victim. I've never sent anybody to prison when the victim didn't know they were a victim."

Continue Reading