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Senate Bill 5: Big Numbers, Tiny Details

As reported by The Dispatch, Senate Bill 5 could save Ohio and local governments big bucks. This comes as no surprise, considering that government unions are constantly asking for more public funds – often from politicians they helped elect. There’s one thing, though, that I haven’t seen much commentary on:

Senate Democrats did not submit amendments. A collaboration of every major public union except the Fraternal Order of Police said yesterday that the bill is too flawed to fix, and Democrats agree.

Of course Democrats agree! Ohio’s Democrats are bought and paid for by the unions. Their failure to submit amendments – after weeks of complaining about being excluded – proves again the hollowness of the union narrative. Ohio is $8 billion in the hole, but the AFSCME and OEA refuse to participate in any process that could weaken their influence.

It’s beyond me why Republican senators feel a need to cater to the unions. If anything, SB 5 should go further to limit union power: government unions work against the electorate. Squeezing taxpayers for more money is the reason public employee unions exist! But, the unions continue spouting class warfare tropes that would make a socialist blush, despite this devastating editorial from Wednesday:

That public-sector workers are not representative of Ohio’s middle class is evident in the numbers. According to the Ohio Legislative Service Commission, Senate Bill 5 will affect 42,000 state workers, 19,500 higher-education employees and about 298,000 employees of local governments such as counties, municipalities, townships and school districts.

That totals 359,500 employees, a mere 6.5 percent of Ohio’s workforce of 5.5 million. In fact, the number of public-sector employees is far outnumbered by more than 500,000 Ohioans who want to work but can’t find jobs.

If we can’t count on the Ohio Senate, at least Governor Kasich has the right idea. Though I’d like to see the governor draw a clearer line between public and private unions, Friday on Cavuto he made some great points about efficient government being better for everyone in the long run:

Cross-posted at that hero.

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Third Base Politics is an Ohio-centric conservative blog that has been featured at Hot Air, National Review, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and others.


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