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Republicans trumpet connection between right-to-work laws and economic growth

On Monday, Iowa Republicans trumpeted a new study from a Michigan research institute which seems to uphold a theory that right-to-work laws produce higher levels of economic activity.

“Another study shows that #RightToWork laws produce higher levels of economic activity!” Iowa House Republicans tweeted Monday afternoon.

200px-Republicanlogo.svgIowa House Republicans pointed to a study from the Mackinac Center for Public Policy (a nonpartisan research and educational institute dedicated to improving the quality of life for all Michigan citizens) which found “that right-to-work laws have a positive and sometimes very positive impact on the economic well-being of states and their residents. Indeed, the study’s findings show that right-to-work laws, on average, cause a one-time, permanent increase in the rate of economic growth in states.”

According to the study, “the 1947 Taft-Hartley Act allowed states to forbid ‘agency shop’ collective bargaining agreements.  These types of contracts require all employees, as a condition of their lawful employment, to financially support a union — either through membership dues or ‘agency fees.’ Right-to-work laws enable employees to continue their employment without regard for their status in or financial support of a union.”

In 2012, after a long history as a labor-friendly and pro-union state, Michigan became the 24th right to work state. The Iowa “right to work” law was passed in 1947. A major push by some Iowa legislators to add right to work provisions to the Iowa constitution has been undertaken, as recently as during the last legislative session which convened this past spring.


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