Late on Tuesday evening, Republicans on a House panel in New Hampshire voted to advance legislation that resembles Scott Walker’s law in Wisconsin ending collective bargaining rights for public sector unions. It’s actually farther reaching.
Under the terms of this plan, public sector workers in the state would become “at will” employees if and when their contracts expire.
That eliminates all the leverage state employees have in negotiation with their employers, and could ultimately end up busting the unions entirely.
A labor fight has been brewing in New Hampshire, where Republicans have huge House and Senate majorities, for weeks. But this was the first legislative step toward actually undermining unions — and the skewed 18-7 vote suggests it could ultimately land on the Democratic governor’s desk, in some form.
The vote came down as protesters jeered and yelled at committee Republicans who had them evicted from the committee room. You can watch that scene unfold here.
Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at email@example.com.