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Judging Janus: Where 5 CT-Gov. Candidates Stand on SCOTUS Ruling Impacting Unions

July 2, 2018 By Staff
Judging Janus: Where 5 CT-Gov. Candidates Stand on SCOTUS Ruling Impacting Unions

The Republicans support the decision. The Democrats do not.

Last week, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that public-sector unions “cannot collect fees from non-members.” Reclaim Connecticut noted that the decision could help Connecticut put its fiscal house in order, since less public-sector union fees translates to less political sway for those same public-sector unions.

Unsurprisingly, Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) quickly weighed in against the decision, calling it “a blow to the principles of collective bargaining – but more worrisome, it is a blow to the ability of unions to effectively represent the interests of the workers they are charged with defending.”

Where do the men who want to replace Malloy next year stand, though?

Reclaim Connecticut found public statements from five of the eight gubernatorial candidates. Here’s where the candidates stand.

SUPPORT JANUS DECISION – 3

GOP-endorsed Mayor Mark Boughton (R-Danbury) said:

“Today’s ruling is a true victory for the first amendment and working people all across Connecticut. Working families will no longer be forced to monetarily support causes that they may not agree with.”

GOP candidate and businessman David Stemerman said:

“This ruling is an important step protecting the First Amendment freedoms of government workers who have been forced to send part of their paychecks to union bosses and allowing them to keep more of their hard-earned money. More important, the chronic budget crisis in Connecticut has been a direct consequence of the massive power public sector unions hold over politicians like Dan Malloy and the backroom deals that have then been cut at the taxpayer’s expense.”

And, in an exclusive interview with Reclaim Connecticut last week, businessman and GOP candidate Bob Stefanowski said:

“I am pleased with the Supreme Court decision on Janus. I think it gives us more power to deal with the unions. I think it takes power away from the union leadership, that they’ve been abusing quite honestly, and I think it’s a terrific development that we can use to [inaudible] some of the problems in the state of Connecticut, by getting to the rank-and-file employees, rather than dealing with the union bosses who basically have forced people to pay dues. So I think the Janus decision is a good development for us.”

OPPOSE JANUS DECISION – 2

Unsurprisingly, the two Democratic candidates came out opposed to the Supreme Court’s decision, which effectively weakens the power of public-sector unions.

Party-endorsed Ned Lamont said:

“Today’s ruling in the Janus v. AFSCME undermines the ability of unions to represent workers, their families and their communities. Once again, this underscores the fact that elections have consequences. As Governor, I would fight efforts to repeal or weaken any progress we have made to protect our families and make our communities stronger.”

Mayor Joe Ganim (D-Bridgeport) tweeted:

UNCLEAR – 3

Reclaim Connecticut swept the campaign websites and Twitter accounts of Tim Herbst, Steve Obsitnik, and independent Oz Griebel. We did not see public statements from these three on the Janus v. AFSCME case.

If we are wrong, or these candidates weigh in, we’ll update our post.