Few–if any–people on the port side of American politics will attack Massachusetts legislators for restricting the right of unions to bargain for health care. That’s because the legislators who voted to restrict that right are Democrats:
House lawmakers voted overwhelmingly last night to strip police officers, teachers, and other municipal employees of most of their rights to bargain over health care, saying the change would save millions of dollars for financially strapped cities and towns.
The 111-to-42 vote followed tougher measures to broadly eliminate collective bargaining rights for public employees in Ohio, Wisconsin, and other states. But unlike those efforts, the push in Massachusetts was led by Democrats who have traditionally stood with labor to oppose any reduction in workers’ rights.
Unions fought hard to stop the bill, launching a radio ad that assailed the plan and warning legislators that if they voted for the measure, they could lose their union backing in the next election. After the vote, labor leaders accused House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo and other Democrats of turning their backs on public employees.
The Democrats in question cited the very same rationale for their votes that Wisconsin Republicans cited for their actions to restrict collective bargaining; it will save money for cash-strapped states. Wisconsin Republicans were treated to torrents of abuse by Democratic protestors, the DNC, and the White House for their actions. If there were any consistency on the part of the national Democratic party, then Massachusetts Democrats would face the same abuse for their actions. But as I say, and as we all know, that just won’t happen. Eviscerating unions rights is likely just fine, as long as the eviscerater in question is a Democrat.