Virginians must be on the lookout for possible changes to worker freedom in 2014. The commonwealth’s governor-elect, Terry McAuliffe, refuses to say whether he will uphold the commonwealth’s treasured Right ot Work Law, which allows all workers, both in the public and private sectors, to freely choose whether or not to join a labor union. Bill Mc Morris of the Washington Free Beacon has the story.
Terry McAuliffe defeated Republican Ken Cuccinelli on Tuesday 48 percent to 45.5 percent in Virginia’s gubernatorial race. McAuliffe, one of the Democratic Party’s premier fundraisers over the past two decades, outraised and outspent Cuccinelli with the help of an outpour of cash from organized labor.
He received more than $2.5 million from unions as the race drew to a close, according to state campaign filings. McAuliffe tripled his union donations from his 2009 gubernatorial run.
Having a Democratic governor in Richmond is a good investment for labor groups, according to Fred Wszolek, spokesman for the Workforce Fairness Institute.
“No one has been a better bag man for union money than Terry McAuliffe,” he said. “He’s going to bide his time, but he’ll eventually hand the keys to the capital to unions. Virginia doesn’t know what it’s getting here.”
Virginia is a right to work state and does not allow coercive union representation. Organized labor has been trying to undermine the law for years, according to National Right to Work Foundation spokesman Patrick Semmens.
“Terry McAuliffe … refuses to answer the national right to work survey which asks first and foremost if he will defend Virginia’s popular right to work law,” he said. “McAuliffe’s victory will be a bad sign for independent employees who wish to remain free from union ranks.”
McAuliffe avoided labor issues, such as whether he supports secret ballots in union elections, on the campaign trail. Wszolek said Virginia residents can expect pro-labor policies to emerge from the governor’s mansion over the next four years.
“[Republicans] weren’t as effective at putting labor issues at the front in this election because McAuliffe didn’t have the voting record of [2009 Democratic candidate Creigh] Deeds,” he said. “Unions don’t just give money—they expect something.”