As votes continue to be cast for ALL legislative races in New Mexico, the issue of “right to work” hangs in the balance. The Rio Grande Foundation tracks national job creation data on “right to work,” but time marches on and “right to work” states continue to flourish relative to their “forced unionism” brethren.
Vincent Vernuccio of the Michigan-based Mackinac Center had the following data in a recent piece published in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Some highlights from that article follow:
*From 2000 to 2015, personal income in right-to-work states increased 91 percent compared to 72 percent in non-right-to-work states, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.
*Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that since right-to-work was passed in Michigan, weekly earnings increased by almost 5 percent or $38.86 per week on average. In Indiana, which also recently enacted right-to-work, earnings are up. Since 2012, they have increased by $83.87 per week.
*When we look at what people can actually buy with their money, workers in right-to-work states have 4.1 percent higher incomes than workers in non-right-to-work states.
*Census data show that people are voting with their feet. Population increased 22.3 percent in right-to-work states but only 9.5 percent in non-right-to-work states from 2000 to 2015.
*Over 480,000 people moved to right-to-work states from July 2014 to July of last year.
*All seven of the top states for private-sector job growth from 1995 to 2015 were right-to-work states.
This election will determine control of the New Mexico Legislature. We don’t get to vote on Senate control for another four years. Absent market-based reforms like “right to work,” New Mexico’s poor economic performance (and difficult spending cuts) is likely to continue.