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Indiana House Dems resume right-to-work boycott

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House Republicans levied more fines Tuesday against Democrats who are boycotting GOP-backed legislation that would bar labor unions from collecting mandatory fees from workers.

Most of the House's 40 Democrats skipped the afternoon session for the eighth day since they began their 2012 session. Democrats have stayed off the House floor to prevent a 67-member quorum needed to conduct business, thus delaying debate on the right-to-work legislation being pushed by Republicans.

GOP House Speaker Brian Bosma said he hadn't heard from Democratic House Minority Leader Patrick Bauer since Monday evening.

Bosma said that if he could get a few more Democrats to split from the caucus, he would meet the quorum needed to conduct business. But he said he isn't lobbying Democrats to return to the floor and is "still counting on people to wake up."

Republicans voted to fine the 35 absent Democrats another $1,000 each, bringing the total for most Democrats to $4,000 each. The new state law allowing the fines was approved after Democrats boycotted the same legislation last year. However, a judge has temporary blocked the collection of those fines while a lawsuit challenging the law plays out.

Five Democrats split with the caucus early in the 2012 session, showing up to the floor routinely for sessions. They said they opposed the right-to-work bill but didn't agree with the stall tactics.

More Democrats could return to work Wednesday, Bauer said. Though he did not say specifically what it would take for them to return.

"Who knows what ill wind will blow between now and then," Bauer said.

The Republicans want to make Indiana the 23rd state to bar unions from collecting mandatory representation fees.

The measure passed the Senate Monday. But Democrats walked off the House floor Monday after losing a series of bruising party-line votes in an effort to change the measure.

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  • Union Tactics
    I worked for a General Contractor a few years back. We were hired by a restaurant chain to do a build out for them. We hired non-union subs for some of the work. The chain received threats of a boycott from local unions.

    My question is simple. If union labor is so superior to non-union labor that they feel they can charge a premium price, why do they need to resort to threats when they don't get the work?
  • Thats crap
    It sounds like you're just being hateful towards unions. we are skilled tradesmen we went to school for at least 4 years to do what we do we are skilled professional. if you call fighting for a fair wage safe working conditions being spoiled well it shows how uneducated you really are
  • NFL Union
    Manning's "contract" says he is due $28MM in March, but, since he was hurt on the job, Irsay may just tell him to hit the bricks. Nice union negotiations there!

    So don't try to compare the NFLPA to the local thugs hanging out at the Teamsters Hall.
  • Superbowl?
    "Our Dems are doing what we voted them in to do which is fight for the workin man."

    Wait...the Dems are doing what you voted them in to do? Which is NOT WORK AT ALL?...Any other place where employees would do this, and they would be fired!
    As for the superbowl, I don't plan on watching it anyway, it's not worth it.
    Do I hate Unions?...Not at all, if they are run properly and they STAY OUT OF POLITICS. Do I hate the actions of the Unions and how they influence our political system and support a party that acts like spoiled children not getting their way? Damn right I do...
    Any other place where you are forced to pay money for "something" you don't want, is called "EXTORTION"...and is illegal...With you guys, it's called "Union Dues"....
    • super bowl
      Hey all you union haters better not watch the superbowl after all those are two union teams that sat out till they got a compromise from the owners. Our Dems are doing what we voted them in to do which is fight for the workin man. I can assure you many republicans will be looking for a job next year win they are voted out.
    • Break is Over
      The old soothsayer sees the upcoming elections as overwhelmingly in the Republicans favor. The primary reason is that voters want a days work for a days pay whereas most current Democrats want a day off for a days pay. I see dim political times ahead for Indiana statehouse Democrats.
    • RTW
      Linda, I agree. It is wrong to push such a divisive law when there is more the legislature could be doing to really help the state. Besides, the real result of a RTW law is to hurt the "middle class". Everything the middle class has done to improve their lives in the last sixty years will be diminished. The new jobs that do come will pay less and offer less benefits. It is a fact. And why won't Daniels pay back the $200K of stolen money? What did he do with it? Inquiring minds want to know.
    • put it out for the people to vote
      If they really wanted to be representative, they would put this issue on the ballot for the people to vote on it, simple as that! and what a farce that Daniels only paid back $3k of $200k he received of stolen money!
    • Get real
      When I sat get real I'm not only talking about Pat Bauer's hair...I'm talking about everyone that has walked out. These people are paid to be there by the people of Indiana and they have a responsibility to be there. If you they want to control the vote then win more seats.

      Children (or the French) are usually the ones that quit when things don't go their way. Time the Dems grow up and do their job and their duty.
    • temper tandrums
      These people must get over the fact that they no longer have a majority in the legislature. Obviously, they do not want the democratic process to be the controlling factor in state government. This is ridiculous.

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