Sen. David Thompson, R-Lakeville, was joined by several other House and Senate Republicans at a news conference this morning who want to see the proposed constitutional amendment on the ballot this year.
The proposal would let voters decide whether union membership and the payment of union dues should be voluntary for all workers. Thompson said he’s working to convince GOP Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem to hold a hearing on the bill in the Rules Committee.
“What I’m hoping for is that we get the bill vetted in the Rules Committee and sent to the floor,” Thompson said.
Thompson said he will not attempt to move the bill from the Rules Committee to the Senate floor. He took the rare step last week of forcing the Senate to vote to yank the bill from the Senate Jobs Committee to the Senate Judiciary Committee. That committee approved it last week. Thompson said he will not force another Senate vote to get the bill to the floor.
Thompson said he asked Senjem to hold a hearing on the bill but didn’t receive a commitment. Senjem said late last week that the votes weren’t there to pass the amendment in the House or the Senate.
No one at the news conference disputed Senjem’s statement, but they said they still want a vote in the House and Senate.
“There’s only one way to find out and that’s to bring it to the floor,” said Sen. David Hann, R-Eden Prairie, when asked if they have the votes to pass it.
The measure has not received a hearing in the House.
Union members and their allies have been lobbying fiercely to defeat the measure.
(Photo by MPR’s Tim Nelson)