Wisconsin Recall Vote Exposes Vulnerability of Public-Sector Unions

Scott Walker photoTo his sworn enemies, Wisconsin Republican Governor Scott Walker's victory last Tuesday over Democratic challenger Tom Barrett by 53 to 46 percent has been hard to spin and to accept. The biggest loser, aside from Barrett himself, is the state's public-sector labor unions. There's not much getting around it. It was public-sector unions who led the effort to recall Walker following passage by the legislature over a year ago of a fiscal reform package that included several tough limitations on collective bargaining power. Unions and allied groups by this January gathered nearly a million signatures to put a recall on the ballot.  All told, some 50,000 volunteers knocked on doors and made phone calls in hopes of unseating Walker. It was to no avail. Yet an arguably bigger story had been well underway: State and local government employees in Wisconsin are exercising their newfound freedom to opt out of union membership. Other states are taking notice. 

The recall vote likely – one only can hope – …