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The Forum

A Journal of Applied Research in Contemporary Politics

Ed. by Disalvo, Daniel / Stonecash, Jeffrey

4 Issues per year


IMPACT FACTOR 2017: 0.536

CiteScore 2017: 0.48

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.265
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.723

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1540-8884
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Volume 10, Issue 1

Issues

Public Sector Unions Need the Private Sector or Why the Wisconsin Protests Were Not Labor's Lazarus Moment

John Ahlquist
Published Online: 2012-05-15 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/1540-8884.1499

I argue that the extension of collective bargaining rights and formation of public sector labor unions requires the prior existence of these rights among significant sections of the private sector economy. The secular decline in private sector unionization will undermine the political bases of support for public sector unions. I demonstrate that public sector unionism emerged where private sector unions were initially strong. Declining private sector unionism has led to a marked decrease in support for public sector unions. The diminution of their allies in the private sector and the prospect of extended periods of austerity at the state and local level have put public sector unions in a precarious position that Republican governors and legislatures are taking full advantage of. The prospects for renewal in the labor movement are dim.

Keywords: labor unions; public sector; state politics; political economy; interest groups

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Published Online: 2012-05-15


Citation Information: The Forum, Volume 10, Issue 1, ISSN (Online) 1540-8884, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/1540-8884.1499.

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American Journal of Political Science, 2018

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