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Tea Party calls for state to join 'Right to Work' ranks



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State Rep. Mike Shirkey (click for larger version)
September 28, 2011 - Tom Bos, founding member of Freedom to Work Coalition and member of Independent Tea Party Patriots, said their goal is not to bust unions.

"I will fight to the death for my right to join a union," Bos said at the Tea Party's Right to Work meeting, Sept. 21, at Fountains Golf and Banquet Center. "Right to Work gives the freedom of a union to make their case and the freedom of the workers to make their choice."

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the top five states for job growth in the private sector between 1999-2009 were all Right to Work states, Texas, Florida, Arizona, Virginia, and Nevada. The bottom five were all "forced union" states, California, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, and Michigan.

"We want people to join a union by choice, an attentive responsive union," he said. "Right now, we have a monopoly situation union members are forced to join and unions are not required to be attentive to the needs of their members," he said. "We have no intention of breaking unions. Even if we did, it would never happen."

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Dr. James O'Neill, who attended the meeting, said he was pro union but workers should have a right to choose.

"I don't think that's wrong," O'Neill said. "It puts the union in a very strong position because they have to earn your right to belong to the union rather than force you into the union."

Attendee Bart Clark said he was at the meeting "to hear what they have to say."

"I like the idea of a more fiscally responsible government and I like the idea of their right to work," he said. "I don't think you have to join the union to become the work establishment."

The meeting hosted special speakers state Sen. Patrick Colbeck, 7th District, state Rep. Mike Shirkey and Union Representative Terry Bowman.

Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.
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