Missouri Senate approves limits on union fees in paychecks

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) _ The Missouri Senate has approved legislation that would require public employees’ annual, written permission for unions to withhold dues from their paychecks.

Senators debated the measure for about seven hours Tuesday before passing it 23-7 shortly before midnight. That vote total is enough to override a gubernatorial veto.

Gov. Jay Nixon has vetoed similar legislation in the past. A version of the bill the House passed in February also garnered enough votes to overcome a veto.

Bill supporters such as Sen. Dan Brown said the legislation would make unions more responsive to members’ needs.

Opponents such as Sen. Gina Walsh said union leaders are already accountable to their members, and Sen. Jamilah Nasheed said the measure is instead designed to weaken Republicans’ political opponents.

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