JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The right-to-work ballot measure will be on the August primary ballot and the Missouri House truly agreed and finally passed SCR 49 on Thursday in a 96-47 vote.
Long-rumored to be more helpful to Republicans in mid-term November elections if the measure was moved to August, the measure’s last stop before final passage was primarily debated between Reps. Holly Rehder and Bruce Franks.
Rehder told Franks that she wanted the date to be moved to “get the certainty back” economically. Rehder’s district is near southern bordering right-to-work states that her and fellow area colleagues say are taking jobs from the area.
Right-to-work, now Prop A on the ballot, was paused by a referendum that gathered over 300,000 signatures.
“We were able to get a record number of signatures and not just from Democrats,” Franks said. “The folks who come from these unions aren’t just Democrats.”
Franks and Rehder debated if the “will of the people” was more accurately defined by the overwhelming amount of signatures on the ballot or the election of a supermajority of pro-right-to-work lawmakers.
“Republicans ran on right to work,” Rehder said, saying that right-to-work was a primary-defining issue in many Republican races. “It’s very important to our area.”
“No one in this body only ran on right-to-work,” Franks retorted. “Folks went out there and collected an extreme amount of signatures. The people showed they were veto-proof. The people of Missouri came out. This is an attempt to defeat the will of the people.”
The referendum turned in specified a November date.
“No matter what happens, it’s going to be our job to get out there and empower these folks,” Franks said.
We Are Missouri, the campaign against Prop A, touted the move as dysfunctional dishonesty and asserted confidence that the measure would be defeated regardless of the date move.
“Through all the efforts to distract and deceive Missouri families about “right-to-work,” it’s been crystal clear that those pushing Proposition A have one ultimate goal: lowering Missouri wages,” Erin Schrimpf of the campaign said. “Anyone who has been paying attention to what has been going on in Jefferson City knows the level of dishonesty and dysfunction and this is no different. Proposition A is wrong for Missouri.
“Now that politicians have moved Proposition A to the August ballot, we look forward to educating Missouri voters about how Proposition A fails to create jobs and forces workers to accept lower pay. Proposition A broadens the gap between working families and the wealthy CEOs at the very time when we need to be giving workers and families greater economic opportunities. We are confident that come August 7, Missourians will protect their pay by voting no on Proposition A.”
Alisha Shurr is a reporter for the Missouri Times and Missouri Times Magazine. She joined the Missouri Times in January 2018 after working as a copy editor for her hometown newspaper in Southern Oregon. Alisha is a graduate of Kansas State University. Contact Alisha at firstname.lastname@example.org.