Arizona Anti-Union Law Upheld
September 6, 2012 11:20 am
Some bad news in an otherwise uplifting week of Labor Day affirmations and DNC speeches: U.S. District Judge Frederick Martone sided with Arizona yesterday in a Phoenix lawsuit brought by the National Labor Relations Board challenging the state’s 2011 law requiring secret ballot union elections.
The NLRB tried to prove that the Arizona state constitutional amendment created to block “card check” elections (and make it easier for workers to unionize) violated federal law and unfairly interfered with the Board’s power to protect union members’ rights. But Judge Martone claimed that because no dispute had been brought thus far between the federal and state laws, it was impossible to say whether the laws would conflict.
[Martone] said his ruling “should not be construed to foreclose … challenges if and when they materialize.” …
Business and conservative groups called for the law change to pre-empt proposed federal legislation that would have made it easier for workers to form unions by signing cards in support. Gov. Jan Brewer called a special session and lawmakers placed the measure on the ballot.
Rebekah Friend, executive director of the Arizona AFL-CIO, said voters were misled by Proposition 113 proponents into thinking that the federal law, which still has not passed, would eliminate secret ballots for all elections.
“The governor called a special session to send a law to the ballot to change our constitution to circumvent a law that has never been passed by Congress,” Friend said. “It certainly doesn’t have some of the terrible ramifications that other laws have had. But if you want to talk about folly… there you go.”
Image from here