DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — As Republicans with majorities in both chambers of the Iowa Legislature prepare to pass a bill that would reduce most collective bargaining rights for public workers, they’re also poised to knock out a political force that tends to challenge them on issues and often backs their opponents.
The proposed changes to Iowa’s collective bargaining law would drastically change how public sector unions negotiate and organize on behalf of roughly 180,000 people in the state. Academics say the ripple effect is weakened unions with reduced membership and less financial stability.
That could impact how those labor groups are able to lobby for legislative changes. Data show key public sector unions in Iowa often finance Democrats.
Lawmakers continue to debate the GOP-backed bill Wednesday. It is expected to pass.