Right to Work in Missouri?

Also – an interesting letter in the St. Louis Beacon. Writing in from Sen. Kit Bond‘s home town of Mexico, Bruce Hillis refutes as myth the notion that promoting “Right to Work” hurt Missouri Republicans in 1978. Bond called the efforts a disaster for the party in a recent interview with the newspaper.

Since the midterms there’s been some chatter about pushing Right to Work. With a veto-proof Senate (26-8) and nearly veto-proof House (105-58) it’s a natural cause to consider.  Nixon will certainly veto RTW, so looking at the override attempt the question is whether enough Democrats would be on board to make up for any Republican defections.

Without looking carefully at each of the incoming house caucuses, my guess is that is a pretty tough bet. But who knows.

In his letter, Hillis notes that Republicans lost only five state legislative seats in 1978. For state level, statewide offices I’m not sure how it went, but nationally Republicans picked up congressional seats while in Missouri the state’s congressional delegation stayed the same (Democrats maintained an 8-2 edge in House seats, and no Senate seats were up).

So maybe Bond, et al were thinking it could have been a better year in Missouri given the national tide. Of course, he had also lost his 1976 gubernatorial re-election bid and perhaps did not relish the state party taking on a controversial issue in the run-up to his comeback in 1980.


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