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0 comments | January 23, 2007 | 10:52 AM | posted by Ryan

Supreme Court Times Blog

The editors at the Supreme Court Times Blog posted some blurbs on the case and they follow in part.

Davenport v. WEA will go for Davenport

A public sector union collects money from nonmembers, as required by a collective bargaining agreement backed up by a state statute. The state statute says the union can spend the money for political purposes only if the nonmember first "affirmatively authorizes" it. The union wants to spend the money first, subject to a possible refund later on. The Supreme Court of the State of Washington ruled in favor of the union, saying the statute requiring nonmembers to "opt in" was a violation of free speech.

I have previously said I thought the state court was wrong in this case. Davenport v. Washington Education Association - Review granted. Therefore, I expect a reversal from the US Supreme Court and a loss for the Washington Education Association. [Details, briefs, etc.]

Davenport v. Washington Education Association - Review granted

Can a state tell a public-sector union that it has to get non-members' consent before it uses "fair share" fees for political purposes?

Further down in the post:

The Supreme Court of Washington held (State ex rel Public Disclosure Commn v. Washington Educ Assoc (Washington 03/16/2006) (6-3) Majority opinion Dissenting opinion) that this requirement is a violation of the 1st amendment.

My view:

I think the Washington court was wrong. To the extent that unions have 1st amendment rights of their own, the states probably have the power give individuals added rights that impair the union's rights somewhat. I thought the Washington court exaggerated the burden on the union….

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