According to a recent website post, Maine unions appear to have been given crucial information on several right-to-work bills that has not been released to the public or even disclosed to Republican lawmakers.
The post, which appeared on the Maine AFL-CIO website, announced that several bills related to right-to-work will be making their way to floor of the State House this week.
“It’s coming– the floor fights in the State House and Senate over the so-called Right to Work bills and the other attempts to weaken our collective bargaining rights will start next week,” said the website post dated May 14, 2015.
Most of the right-to-work bills originated in the House of Representatives, and therefore are scheduled by Speaker of the House Mark Eves (D-North Berwick).
However, the schedule of the bills has not been made publicly available, nor has it been made known to minority Republicans in the House of Representatives.
“We were not notified about Right to Work coming up this week,” said Rob Poindexter, Communications Director for the Maine House Republicans.
Rep. Larry Lockman, a sponsor of two of these right-to-work bills, has similarly been left in the dark on the scheduling of his bills. “We won’t know until the last minute when these workplace freedom bills will be up for debate on the floor of the House,” he explained.
Lockman had strong words for Speaker Eves, saying “the thing that really stinks about this is the Speaker’s disrespect for minority legislators.”
But a lack of information on the schedule of bills seems to be a common theme in the House of Representatives. Poindexter acknowledged that House Republicans “never get a heads-up on that sort of thing.”
“The Democrats do us no favors in that regard.”
The Maine AFL-CIO and Speaker Eves’ office did not immediately return a request for comment for this article.
Pre-printed postcards from opponents of right-to-work started landing on members’ desks this morning, so it’s clear now that the Speaker’s office is working closely with the Maine AFL-CIO. That’s no surprise, but the fact that the Speaker has not informed minority leadership about scheduling is an abuse of the legislative process. Eves is a partisan hack and a sock puppet of the union bosses.