Friday, May 20, 2011

Union Busting In Tennessee

The Tennessee State House voted 59-39 on Thursday to severely limit collective bargaining for teachers. The vote was along party lines, with six Republicans joining Democrats in opposition to the bill. The GOP effectively limited debate on the bill twice, stifling Democrats by shutting off their microphones in the middle of their comments, according to the Times Free Press.

The house bill would curtail collective bargaining for teachers on all issues except salary and benefits. The Senate already passed a complete ban on collective bargaining for teachers. The two versions of the legislation must now be reconciled.

In a rare moment of lucidity by a politician, Rep. JoAnne Favors, D-Chattanooga, called the bill a move toward “privatization, taking over the school systems,” and that supporters understand that “there’s plenty of money to be made there and, as a greedy society, we are looking for new revenue streams.” Republican Dale Ford, who voted against the bill, said, “you’re very naive if you don’t think this is payback politics.”

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