The Leftist Agenda In Teacher Unions And More With Mark Mix – What is the leftist agenda behind teacher unions? Are conservative teachers being forced to pay dues to the union? What is the purpose of a teachers union? Tune in to learn the answers to these questions and more with Mark Mix.
Air Date: 09/19/2022
Guest: Mark Mix
On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton
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Alright, guys, Mark Mix is going to be joining us once again. We had him just on just a few weeks ago, but good to have him back. Right to Work is a very important thing to be fighting for in our country for so many different reasons, but looking forward to catching up with him on what they’re fighting against in DC right now.
Right to Work actually means that you don’t have to belong to a union: the government can’t make you belong to a union and pay union dues. You don’t have to be a liberal or associate with a liberal crowd like the unions. You can actually be free from that.
Now, Texas is a Right to Work state, and I was shocked this last week to find out that in our Texas state law, every school teacher, including those who are not in the unions, have to pay union dues every month to the union, even if they’re not part of the union. No, no wait a minute.
Union, they take that money and they turn that into really liberal stuff and they work for Democrats and progressives on a regular basis. And so you mean to tell me even our conservative Christian teachers are helping pay for progressive stuff and gender transition clauses and all that? As it turns out, yes. So I sent it to one of our state senators and said, hey, did you know this? And they’re like, no, I didn’t realize that was in the law. So what we’re finding out is unions have a lot of clout, even in states where they’re not very big. And nationally, unions are only 6% to 7% of the nation.
So finding out that even unions are running the educational system in non-union states was shocking and pretty much explains why education has become so progressive as it is. So even looking at how you deal with this, Mark Mix with National Right to Work Foundation, man, he is so good on this and so good on the freedom to choose your jobs and freedom to not be coerced by government to support political institutions you don’t agree with. We thought it would be really good to have him look at what’s going on, especially with schools across the nation, what’s happening with these teachers unions and this radical agenda they’re pushing.
Mark Mix, our special guests, stay with us, folks, we’ll be right back on WallBuilders Live.
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Welcome back to WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us. Always good to have Mark Mix with us. We just had you a couple of weeks ago, but, man, we can’t get enough of National Right to Work Foundation. Thank you for coming on, Mark.
Good to be with you again and glad to talk about this important issue. So thanks for the opportunity.
Well, in fact, I was just thinking about you. We’d already scheduled the interview, and I was reading Pete Hegseth’s new book on Battle for the American Mind, and he talked in there about the importance of right to work in order to break up these public unions, especially the teacher unions, communists of Cultural Marxists have so infiltrated them and they’ve got such a stranglehold on the education system.
But it was interesting to me that he brought it back to Right to Work and the effort that you’re doing and why that’s so important. So some people don’t think about that what you’re doing is free market, right to work, battle these unions, but it actually affects our education system and everything else as well. It’s a much bigger topic than what we sometimes see it as.
Yes, indeed. The news is really good on that front because I think if there was a silver lining coming out of COVID, it was the fact that parents and taxpayers and others got a real peak at what was going on in the government school system. And Rick, the power of the unions in our government school system is a result of legislative action, it’s a result of state legislatures and school boards and city councils and county commissions, they give this private organization, IEA labor union, the monopoly voice in the marketplace when it comes to public education. And so this union power and the ability to reform the educational system in America run in a head on collision.
Because when you think about Randy Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, and Becky Pringle, the president of the National Education Association, and you just do just a real shallow dive on the views that they have about what our school system should be or shouldn’t be, and it’s no surprise that we find out that there’s less about reading, writing and arithmetic and more about social engineering and political work and cultural degradation. It’s alright there for people to see and we’ve seen it and now we’re talking about it and hopefully we’re going to see some dramatic change.
Well, and let me ask you, just in terms of big labor’s money in the elections for 2022, obviously, for them it’s all or not. I mean, they really need the Democrats to maintain control. So they’re going all in a lot of these races out there. Do you think they still have the level of influence that they had in the past? I mean do you think they’re going to be able to pull out some of these races? I know this is off topic from what we’re supposed to be talking about today, but you’re so plugged into this. I was just curious what you were thinking on that.
Well, the idea about their power is one thing. The idea about their money, there’s no question they’re going to have the money. I mean, when you have a government sum on the scale that allows you to force people to pay dues or fees in order to work, that’s a pretty good business model. And so from the private sector perspective, they’re going to have more money than they’ve ever had to spend on politics and they’re going to spend it.
Hey, drill down on that real quick so people understand. They literally have a forced donation for these employees, and it’s not a couple of million dollars, it’s hundreds of millions of dollars. Just the teacher unions of California alone get hundreds of millions of dollars like that to play in the campaigns with. It’s huge.
Yeah, that’s right. So let’s start with the private sector. In the private sector, the federal government allows union officials to force workers to associate with them and they also allow union officials to force workers to pay them for taking away their rights of association. It’s a really amazing thing when you look at it from a very specific perspective.
So in 23 states that don’t have Right to Work laws today, workers would lose their jobs if they don’t pay money to a private organization, i.e. a labor union. That money goes into a general treasury account. And while union officials will say that they don’t use it for politics, that’s absolutely ridiculous because they use it for things that are very, very political, like voter registration drives, get out the vote drives, mobilization drives, and so-called union paid volunteers going out and walking streets and walking neighborhoods and knocking on doors and putting out literature and printing signs and all that stuff. That’s all part of the unions program.
At the public sector, for the teachers unions and government unions, it’s a little bit different, Rick. We’ve talked about this before, but it’s important to talk about it again. In 2018, we won a US. Supreme Court case called Janice Viasme. In that case, on behalf of a single employee in the state of Illinois who stood up and said stop. When the union said that he had to pay them fees in order to work for the state of Illinois, the United States Supreme Court, the majority decision, said that no government employee anywhere in America can be forced to pay anything to a union in order to work for their government. Because everything that government unions do, teachers unions and public sector unions do, is political by nature: they’re redressing government and so that money is being used to influence politics.
And so it’s no surprise that the unions, not only do they spend money in the hundreds of millions, Rick, they spend millions in the billions. And I know billions not a lot of money anymore according to the general consensus of what our government does “for us or to us”, depending how you look at it. But it literally is probably the biggest amount that spend in politics.
And so when your power is a derivative of government action, you got to be in politics. And that’s where the unions are. Instead of going out and selling a product to workers and encourage them to join voluntarily, they’re to play politics because their power is resident and part of and a derivative of government action. That’s why they play politics so hard. That’s why they’re involved. And that’s why we have to be involved fighting back against it.
Catch us up on even that fight individually in individual states. You guys have been doing this a long time. You’ve won big battles and managed to get right to work states. I think, what are we at, like 28, 27, something like that? And now they want to try to override that with federal law. Tell us what they’re doing with those.
Yeah, Rick, we’ve passed five new Right to Work laws in the last ten years. It’s been a really good run. And the more we talk about individual freedom and individual liberty in the workplace, the more people respond. But the union officials and the politicians that are recipients of that money we just talked about don’t like the fact that we’re making progress.
They don’t want you to turn it off that spicket, man. They like all that money coming to them. Yeah.
Indeed they do. And so they’ve got a plan, a bill that’s already passed the House of Representatives that passed last year. And, Rick, you won’t be surprised by this. It passed with no committee hearings, no testimony. It just ran right to the floor. And the first thing, this bill, it’s called the PROACT, the Protecting Right to Organize Act, which is misnamed. And that’s a deeper dive into labor policy. But there is no prohibitions in federal law about people organizing unions. That’s a fact. And no matter what union officials say or anyone else says or any politician says, workers who want to organize and do it by the regulations that have been established for 80+ years, they can unionize and organize union. So there’s nothing that stops them from doing that.
What they do want to do, though, Rick, in one of the centerpieces of that bill is to repeal all 27 Right to Work laws. And you say, well, how can the federal legislature repeal state Right to Work laws that have been passed in state legislatures across the country over the last 50, 60 years? 5, as I mentioned, in the last 10 years? Well, they can do it because the ability for a state to pass a Right to Work law is actually a privilege granted by the United States Congress back in 1947 under a bill that passed called the Taft Hartley act.
From 1935 to 1947, labor unions grew dramatically because they went to government. And Franklin Roosevelt and his large majorities in congress gave them this compulsory forced unionism power. And from 1937, when the Supreme Court upheld it as constitutional till 1947, the unions grew like crazy and they have this power. And congress came back after 1946, and they said, we went too far, we need to reform this. And they allowed states the privilege, the opportunity to pass Right to Work laws which outlaw the forced payment of dues or fees that an employee would have to pay or lose their job…
Essentially gave the final decision back to the states, instead of it being a one size fits all from Washington?
Well, that’s right. They didn’t give the final decision to the states, but they gave the decision to state. What they’re trying to do now is take back that decision and say, you know what, we’re going to re-impose federal jurisdiction over state labor policy in every aspect, including the ability to enforce this forced dues provision that exists in federal law today.
I mean, in California, for example, there is no state statute that says private sector workers have to pay union dues in order to work. That is power that comes from the federal government. So in California, they just let the federal jurisdiction apply and they can write these union security agreements and say you must pay us or you will lose your job. In a Right to Work state, they can’t write that provision into a contract, they can’t have union security, forced dues clauses and contracts because the state has said, we’ll take the privilege you gave us and we’ll pass Right to Work laws.
So this bill that’s pending in the senate with 47 co-sponsors now would basically eliminate the ability for states to have it and it would repeal all the 27 Right to Work laws that are in place today across the country.
That’s huge. Okay, I’m always wanting to learn more about the history and the constitutional provisions and all that. So I got to ask you, I read the constitution all the time. There is no labor provision anywhere in the constitution, I know they use the commerce clause for it, but wouldn’t they rather make these decisions at the state level, at the local level and not have something, this massive bureaucracy in Washington DC. making all these decisions? This bill would be the opposite of that. It’s the opposite of federalism. It’s consolidating power at the federal level again.
That’s right. And they had that debate back in 1933, Rick. When Roosevelt tried to pass the original NRA, National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933, it passed through the house, passed through the senate, Roosevelt signed it and it went up to the Supreme Court and it was ruled unconstitutional for the very reasons you’re articulating, violation of the 10th Amendment, the 9th amendment, those types of things.
And I know you guys are much greater students and better students of the Constitution than I am, but let’s just go over to the First Amendment of the constitution that says the right to associate, the right to speech, the right to speech and the right to associate comes with a corollary logically or they can’t exist. And that corollary is the right not to associate, the right not to speak. And so, it’s a very basic first amendment argument when we talk about this forced associations written to law.
So Roosevelt gets overruled by the Supreme Court, he gets mad. He sends a letter over to Chief Justice Frankfurter and says, you know, you guys are getting pretty old over there and you’re getting long in the tooth. And so we think we probably need to add an associate Justice to any current Justice who is over 70 years old and remains on the court over the next six months. So that would have meant that the Supreme Court would have gone to 15.
And Rick, as you know, there is no articulated number for the Supreme Court in Article III of the Constitution, it simply says there will be a court. So from time to time, the size of the court has changed. So Roosevelt threatens Chief Justice Frankfurter. And back then, let’s see, we had three Musketeers and we had the four horsemen, and then we had Chief Justice Frankfurter and Owen Roberts were the two kind of swing Justices. And all of a sudden, when they reintroduced basically the same bill in 1935, it passes, the president signs it, it goes up to the Supreme Court. And Rick, all of a sudden, the two Justices that were against it previously are now for it, and it gets upheld in a case called Jones and Laughlin Steele and it becomes federal law.
And so the arguments that were made against it in 1933 were the same that they made against it in 1937. But the court, because of the Roosevelt’s pressure and the threat to pack the court, the switch in time saved nine. And this is one of those cases where they switched, I think, unemployment insurance and Social Security…
Minimum wage, exactly. You got it. I think it was those four issues that caused the switch in time and it allowed Roosevelt to push the whole new deal through back during that period, which we know has been a disaster for federalism and for state’s rights.
There was a United States senator a few years ago in a hearing that said that Roosevelt was boneheaded for making that threat to pack the court… Oh, wait, he’s president now and he’s threatening to pack the court. Isn’t history interesting? Mark, what you’re doing is so important. Winning this battle is so important. I’m assuming if they pass this to reverse it, not only would we have to have the majority, but you’d have to have a veto proof majority because if they try to reverse it come January, February with the Republican majority, then Biden just vetoes that. So right now, time is of the essence, do you think we get Manchin or one of the other Democrats to maybe say no and stop this thing?
Well, I think so. And they know that probably the one gambit that they can play to get this done is to change the Senate rules. And changing the Senate rules to allow it to be majoritarian body going forward is something they’ve been talking about, packing the court, something you’re talking about…
Meaning they only need the 50 votes plus Kamala instead of 60 to break? Yeah, go ahead.
That’s correct. So the idea of changing the Senate rules that would basically say, we’re taking away the right to extended debate, we’re taking away the right to filibuster. And in the House, I think the way our Founders and I’m getting into your territory now as I got to be careful that I get this right, but the Founders understood that there was a passion for the people, and the House of Representatives was designed for the passions of America to be debated and shoot people, shoot each other over there and all kinds of good stuff. And the Senate was the place where the passions would cool, where they would sit in a dish for a while and cool off and let the debate be meaningful and long and that it really should be difficult to pass laws and pass statutes and past things that impact the lives of Americans because there were specific enumerated powers of federal government. But we belong way past those.
So what they need to do now and what they’re talking about is if we can simply change the Senate rules and make it a majoritarian body where simply a majority vote wins it every time, that bodes ill for right to work and for lots of other things that have been stopped because the majority has mustered public support. I mean, you can’t really win a filibuster unless you have public support.
In fact, when we defended right to work in 1965 and 1966, when Lyndon Johnson and Mike Mansfield, the Senate President, tried to repeal Section 14B of the Taft Tartly Act, which allows states to pass right to work laws, they basically were talking, they had to create a new model for the Senate in order to get that thing done. But we beat them, and we went to Everett Dirksen right after the Civil Rights Act was the big battle in the early 60s. Dirksen looked at Reed Larsen, then president of the National Rights to Work Committee, said, Reed, you can’t win a filibuster if you don’t have the public on your side. And you don’t have the public on your side, I can’t help.
So Dirksen had stood down saying, we’re going to let this go through, and Johnson’s going to win, and Mansfield is going to win. So Reed went out, and next, about three weeks later, there were over 300 editorials from the largest newspapers around the country saying, you can’t overturn Section 14B. And Dirksen looked at this and said, maybe we do have the public support. And he decided to launch the filibuster, the safe Right to Work back in 1965 and 66.
And that next election cycle, the unions took it on the chin, they lost more people that had voted to force Americans to pay union dues to get or keep a job. And politically, we have not been in that situation until now. And the reason why we’re in that fight now, Rick, is because we’re making progress against forced unionism. And union officials know that their revenue stream that literally is billions of dollars every year is at stake if we can give workers a choice to say, I’ll support you financially, but I need to know what you’re doing for me as opposed to, I’ll support you financially because I’ll lose my job if I don’t.
Mark, there’s so many people listening right now that for them this is a new issue, they haven’t to deal with it personally or in their particular state. What’s the best way for them to follow you and learn more about this? Because I think as they hear this, I hope they’re hearing, this does affect me. This isn’t just if I’m in a business where they’re unionized, this affects my education, it affects the whole system out there. How can they follow you and keep up with these fights?
Yeah. Well, two places. One, if they’re interested in what their workplace rights might be, if they’re affected specifically by forced unionism and the union tells them one thing and they’re not sure they believe it, they can go to the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation. We have 22 staff lawyers, they do nothing but represent employees, and we provide that service for free. And they can find out about their rights in the workplace at nrtw.org, nrtw.org. If they’re interested in what’s going on legislatively, both in Congress and in their state, they can go to the committee’s website, which is our legislative body, which is Nrtwc.org. Nrtwc.org, and they can find out about what’s happening legislative, like the bill we just talked about.
Okay, I’m going to put we’ll have both of those links at our website at wallbuilderslive.com to make it easy today. I so wish I had a Joe Rogan style program where we had 3 hours marked because I know we would enjoy it and have a good time. As we’re signing off, though, I did notice that you guys had a victory in West Virginia at the State Supreme Court on protecting right to work. And so I wonder, do you think Manchin, for instance, does he realize when that kind of thing happens and he sees the state move that direction, does he defend his own states right to work out law by going against this bill? I don’t know. What do you think?
Well, he’s a cosponsor of the Pro Act, which would repeal, he is cosponsor… Yes, he is. Don’t get fooled by Joe, Manchin, Rick. Don’t get fooled by him. We want to give the best hope for all these guys, but they’re all politicians at the end of the day, and we just got to keep the pressure on, and that’s all we can do. That’s our job in this republic, keep the pressure on. Hold them accountable. Right?
I love what Congressman Bobby Kean always says, “Never trust any politician any further than you can throw them over your shoulder left-handed.” Mark, God bless you, man. Keep up the great work. We’ll have both those links today at our website. I appreciate you coming on today, man.
My pleasure. Thanks for the opportunity.
That was Mark Mix. I appreciate him coming on the program. We’re back with David and Tim now. Guys, a lot of history there. As part of what I love getting experts like him on, just in terms of how these union laws ended up where they didn’t have the freedom for states to choose not to require people to participate. How that came about, I did not realize that that was so close to being taken away.
Well, you know, it’s a strange thing that those 23 states can still force people to do things they don’t want to when it comes to supporting political beliefs. And as Mark pointed out, the reason the Supreme Court went against that was every union is lobbying for a government position. I mean, they’re lobbying a position in government, and you shouldn’t be using people’s dollars to lobby for a position they don’t believe in.
So hearing that and hearing 23 states still have that, and then hearing that the federal government, the Biden administration is trying to do this massive you’ve all got to be union stuff, and by the way, if you notice it, even as much as they’re fighting the fossil fuels with ESG stuff, they’re all over ending fossil fuels, they are favoring several oil refineries and oil production companies over Tesla because Tesla, even though it’s electric car and that’s what they want, is non-union. And some of these oil companies are pro-union. So they’re so pro-union that they’re actually violating their own core beliefs. And that’s how…
They’ve got a conflict of their own values. Then they’ve got a real conflict going. Yeah.
Exactly. And they keep saying that we Republicans want to force people to do things. We want to force women to not have abortion. Wait a minute. What’s this deal of forcing everyone to belong to a union? What’s the deal of passing a national or federal law that requires every state to provide abortion, requires every hospital provide it? I mean, they’re the ones that are trying to coerce their beliefs on everybody. They’re doing it with education. They’re doing it with gender stuff. They’re doing it with all these different areas.
It’s interesting to me, Romans 2, twice in Romans 2, it talks about how that oftentimes when you accuse other people, you accuse them of what you yourself are doing. I think that’s really what Democrats have done for the last several couple of decades; as they accuse others, they accuse the Republicans, and the conservatives are doing what they intend to do. And now that they have the power they’re trying to do. This is crazy stuff.
And guys, that was interesting too when he pointed out what unions do even partaking in elections and how they have people going outdoor to door and promoting things. Because one of the things that so often we hear even about churches is, well, wait a second, 501(c)3 churches, you can’t be political. You can’t talk about politics, pastors. You can’t do that kind of stuff.
And one of the things we often point out is that if you look at all of the nonprofits, all the 501(C)3 that are out there, like unions, teachers unions or other kind of business unions or even Planned Parenthood is a nonprofit, when you look at some of the other nonprofits out there and the conduct and their behavior, when it comes to being engaged politically, they are setting a standard, it’s a double standard that really only Christians in the church are held to a standard where they say don’t be political. But I thought again, it was a great point when you look at what unions do, even engaging on the political level and arena, where they require their union members to do, or what they use their dues from the union to actually hire people to go door to door, they’re actively campaigning.
And really, I mean, this is something everybody knows. It’s a political arm engaging actively in the political sphere, and one of many, many reasons why unions are ultimately a problem because of the fact that they’re not just promoting what is good for the individual, for the worker, they are promoting and really supporting, propping up an agenda that’s very destructive to the everyday worker and to the American people.
But again, the idea that nonprofits can’t get involved in politics, just look at unions and what they do, and as Christians, we should have a perspective different thinking that churches should be engaged, they should be involved in the process. And just like other nonprofits, like a union can be involved and encourage people to go out and vote and vote for certain values, positions and issues, churches should do the same thing. Just because churches are a 501(C)3 doesn’t mean they can’t be involved in the process.
Well, we’re very thankful for Mark Mix being on the front lines with these issues, both federal and state. I appreciate him taking the time to join us today. Folks, you should share this program with your friends and family so they can get educated about these issues as well. All of our programs are available at wallbuilderslive.com. Thanks so much for listening today to WallBuilders Live.