Ozarks lawmaker revises Right-to-Work debate in Missouri legislature

SPRINGFIELD, Mo.-- In August, Missouri voters said a loud no to right to work.

However, Springfield Republican Eric Burlison, is trying again and wants people to have the right of refusal to join unions.

" The legislature had passed this as an issue, and the union collected the signatures and applied their language to the ballot and placed it before the voters," State Sen.-elect Eric Burlison. "So, it never went into effect. Missouri was never a right to work state," he said.

Union spokesperson Jeff Phillips is happy that Missouri is not a right to work state, but frustrated the votes aren't being respected.

""Two-thirds of the people who came out and voted in August voted no. They said clearly they don't want right to work. This isn't just union people," Phillips said.

However, Burlison says he believes it's the right thing to do for the people and the state.

"This is an issue that is a moral issue, and it's a constitutional right and we would never allow for the majority to take away minority rights. That's why we are a constitutional republic," Burlison explained.

The Right to work bill would allow people to refuse to join unions after they are hired, but Phillips say's the state of Missouri already has this.

"Federal law forbids anyone forced to join a union. the people like Eric Burlison who are behind this are trying to trick people into thinking that people are being forced to against their will to join unions which they're not," explained Phillips

However, Burlison disagrees saying, "If you don't want to join the union that's your choice but you don't get the job. so it's not quite a choice."

He just want's it to be fair game when it comes to the unions. However, Phillips is prepared to also fight for what he believes is right.

"We would do like we did last year and we'd mount a grass root effort to get out and defeat it again if we had to," Phillips said.

Read the original version of this article at www.ky3.com.