Josh Goodman is a former staff writer for GOVERNING..E-mail: email@example.com
If you follow Congress, you probably know that the preeminent business-labor fault line right now is the rather obscure question of whether workers should be able to unionize through public petitions (a.k.a "card check") or whether they should only be able to unionize through secret ballot votes.
Business groups hate card check, unions love it. As greatly expanded Democratic majorities in Congress take office this month, along with President Barack Obama, the chances for the bill to allow card check, the Employee Free Choice Act, will improve greatly.
In this context, business groups are pursuing an interesting strategy. They're not just fighting card check in Congress, but also making a push to amend state constitutions to fight it state by state. A new group called Save our Secret Ballot is working for ballot measures to require secret votes for unionization.
The group is starting with five states, Arizona, Arkansas, Missouri, Nevada and Utah, but says that more could be added. In other words, one of the hottest topics in federal politics will soon be one of the hottest topics in state politics too.
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