The Supreme Court just handed down its decision in Harris v. Quinn, where the issues were (via ScotusBlog):

(1) Whether a state may, consistent with the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution, compel personal care providers to accept and financially support a private organization as their exclusive representative to petition the state for greater reimbursements from its Medicaid programs; and (2) whether the lower court erred in holding that the claims of providers in the Home Based Support Services Program are not ripe for judicial review.

The ruling was 5-4, with the majority authored by Justice Alito, as tweeted by ScotusBlog:

TPM elaborated on the fear from the left, Unions Fear This SCOTUS Case Could Bring Their ‘Final Destruction’

From the Majority Opinion:

This case presents the question whether the First Amendment permits a State to compel personal care providers to subsidize speech on matters of public concern by a union that they do not wish to join or support. We hold that it does not, and we therefore reverse the judg­ment of the Court of Appeals.

TPM elaborated prior to the decision on the fears from the left, which were not fully realized, Unions Fear This SCOTUS Case Could Bring Their ‘Final Destruction’

The case, Harris v. Quinn, is about the constitutionality of “agency fees” charged by public sector unions to all workers in a unionized setting, even non-union members. These fees are essential to their operation….

Unions fear the implications extend far beyond the home health worker profession in Illinois. Agency fees in principle are important to public employee unions because they’re required by law to bargain for all workers in a unionized setting. If agency fees for non-members are ruled to be a violation of free speech, unions fear they would lose funding, become less effective at bargaining for benefits and, in turn, lose members.

A death spiral.

One labor official said such a result would bring about “the possible final destruction of the American labor movement.” The official added, “It would cause the death not only of public sector unions and what’s left of private sector unions, but also the Democratic Party,” suggesting that the demise of unions would make Democrats more reliant on Wall Street money.

Joel Rogers, a law professor at the University of Wisconsin, wrote in The Nation magazine that the challengers’ case in Harris goes for the “kill shot” against public employee unions.


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