‘Paycheck Protection’ bill sent to state Senate

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – With opposition from 20 Republicans, the Missouri House of Representatives sent legislation to the Senate on Thursday that would require annual authorization by public employee labor union members for their unions to deduct dues.

The bill passed by a 83 to 69 vote, with just one vote to spare. No Democrat supported the bill, and Republican lawmakers like Jay Barnes, Caleb Rowden, Chrissy Sommer, Noel Torpey, and others in competitive districts sided with Democrats against the bill.

House Budget Committee Chairman Rick Stream, R-St. Louis, who is running for St. Louis County Executive, skipped the vote to send the bill to the Senate after voting in favor of it earlier in the week. Other Republicans, including Reps. Robert Cornejo, Dean Dohrman, Jeff Messenger also missed the vote (Dohrman and Messenger and originally supported the bill).

A handful of Republicans who had skipped the original vote did ultimately vote in favor of sending the bill to the Senate. Rep. Chuck Gatschenberger, R-St. Charles, as well as Rep. Bart Korman, R-High Hill, supported the bill on Thursday after missing the vote on perfection earlier in the week.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Holly Rehder, R-Sikeston, has an uphill climb now in the Senate, where Democrats are almost guaranteed to stage a filibuster.

With such a thin margin of support on a bill like ‘paycheck protection,’ chance for passage of Speaker Tim Jones’s chief priority, ‘right to work,’ seems unlikely. The House may consider the bill next week.

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