Raising Your Taxes and Preserving Union Privileges
SEIU spends tens of millions of dollars to raise taxes and preserve union privileges that keep dues and taxpayer money flowing into SEIU accounts. The union is one of the largest organizations active in financing ballot measures in states that allow voters to approve initiatives, like California, Colorado, and Michigan. SEIU and its affiliates spent $40,366,010 on ballot measure campaigns on all issues in 2012, the most recent year with major SEIU-funded efforts.
SEIU has backed numerous tax increase campaigns and opposed other tax cut measures. SEIU efforts to hike taxes serve to keep SEIU’s forced dues from public-sector employees flowing. SEIU contributed:
- At least $8.3 million for California’s Proposition 30 tax hikes;
- Almost $3 million to establish an income tax in Washington;
- Over $2 million to raise taxes in Oregon;
- $200,000 to defeat a series of Colorado tax cuts; and
- $110,000 to defeat the repeal of a Washington state sales tax.
SEIU spends heavily to defend union privileges, including compulsory dues arrangements (union shops), union political contributions, and declarations that recipients of public assistance were actually “government employees” subject to forced unionization. Again using member dues, SEIU has put millions behind these campaigns to compel people to pay even more dues to SEIU:
- Roughly $10 million to defeat a ban on union donations to politicians in California;
- At least $9.36 million to restore the Michigan compulsory “dues skim” that forced tens of thousands of stay-home caregivers to become dues-paying SEIU members; and
- $4.1 million to defeat public-sector collective-bargaining reforms in Ohio.
Union member dues frequently fund these campaigns, and the Supreme Court has ruled that some schemes SEIU has devised to extract money from employees who don’t support the union’s political campaigns violate employees’ constitutional rights.