Missouri Labor Leaders Not Worried About Wisconsin Recall

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ST. LOUIS,  MO (KTVI)-- Organized labor failed to oust Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker Tuesday during the recall election.  But Missouri labor leaders don't think the failure at the ballot box will have much impact in Missouri.

"I'm disappointed in the outcome of the governor's race," said St. Louis Labor Council leader Bob Soutier Wednesday.  "But Democrats gained a majority in the Wisconsin Senate and I'm not disappointed by the campaign effort labor made," he added.

Governor Walker angered organized labor by winning legislative approval to cut back public employee collective bargaining power in an effort to better control state spending.

Labor leaders organized a recall effort and forced the election Tuesday.  Walker defeated the Democratic candidate Mayor Tom Barrett of Milwaukee by a larger margin than he did in their first contest in 2010.

Walker said the victory margin showed voters "really do want leaders who stand up and make the tough decisions."

SEUI Local One vice president Nancy Cross does not expect Missouri lawmakers to try to remove rights from public employee unions.  Missouri wants to have more good jobs for people and they've said that through the legislative session," she said.

Missouri House leader Rep. Tim Jones (R) of Eureka said "we don't have the same public sector unions as Wisconsin."  He pointed out Missouri's financial health is much better than many other states.  "We have a triple A bond rating and a true balanced budget. "

He and Republican Senator Scott Rupp of St. Charles agreed voters are looking for political leaders who make the tough decisions.  "The want you to get results," Rupp said pointing out Walker proved he could get the job done when it came to balancing the state budget.

Betsey.Bruce@tvstl.com
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