The West Virginia Senate passed a measure Thursday to outlaw mandatory union dues and fees as a condition of employment.
The Senate approved the bill with a 17 to 16 vote before sending it to the House of Delegates. The measure was introduced Jan. 13 on the first day of the 60-day legislative session. The policy has been a Republican priority since the party secured the legislature in November 2014. It is more commonly known as right-to-work.
“I believe this is a critical first step toward bringing about the kind of change in West Virginia that is desperately needed to jump start our struggling economy,” Senate President Bill Cole said in a statement provided to The Daily Caller News Foundation. “For far too many years, the status quo has held our state back, and today is an important step in moving West Virginia forward.”
Supporters argue it will help reverse decades of bad economic policies enacted under previous Democratic control. Critics, however, dispute the claim by noting the policy makes it much more difficult for workers to advocate for themselves. Americans for Prosperity State Director Jason Huffman notes the policy will help workers while promoting job growth.
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