Some of the hardest fights and most painful losses of the last few years were the passage of state anti-labor laws in a state with a long and proud union history. Specifically, these include passage of union busting right-to-work-for-less (RTWFL) and the repeal of prevailing wage for public construction projects. Union members and supporters of working families fought those tooth and nail.
Supporters of these anti-worker bills promised the moon. Employers and workers were supposed to flock to West Virginia with the passage of RTWFL. The repeal of prevailing wage was supposed to save taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. None of those things happened. In fact, the state has lost around 60,000 people since 2015.
WV Governor Jim Justice admitted that these were epic fails yesterday. Here's a snip from MetroNews:
“Really and truly, let’s just be brutally honest,” the governor said about a half-hour into Wednesday night’s town hall. “We passed the right-to-work law in West Virginia. And we ran to the windows looking to see all the people that were going to come — and they didn’t come. We got rid of prevailing wage. We changed our corporate taxes and we’ve done a lot of different things. And we’ve run to the windows and they haven’t come.
“We’ve absolutely built the field in a lot of different places thinking build the field and they’ll come, and they didn’t come.”
Lots of us were saying "No ****" when we heard that. Unfortunately, the governor was saying that while all those things failed, this time around repeal of the state income tax will REALLY work.
It reminds me of the cartoon Peanuts when Lucy repeatedly held the football for Charlie Brown only to yank it away at the last minute. Will we fall for that again?