WSJ poll: 62% oppose eliminating collective bargaining rights on benefits for public employees

posted at 4:58 pm on March 2, 2011 by Allahpundit

People are buzzing about it so I’m giving you the link now, but the crosstabs and a fuller analysis won’t be available until 6:30 p.m. ET. If any “quirks” show up in the sample like they did with the NYT poll, we’ll revisit this again later.

For now, though, bad news with a little good mixed in:

Eliminating collective bargaining rights for public-sector workers over health care, pensions or other benefits would be either “mostly unacceptable” or “totally unacceptable,” 62% of those surveyed said. Only 33% support such limits…

The poll shows 68% of the respondents would like public employees to contribute more for their retirement benefits and 63% want these workers to pay more for their health care. Only 29% and 34% find these moves either “mostly” or “totally unacceptable.” A clear majority, 58%, also find it acceptable to freeze government workers’ salaries as governments get a handle on spending, whereas 40% think that would be unacceptable.

Similarly, 77% of the 1,000 adults interviewed for the poll think unionized state and municipal employees should have the same rights as those union members who work for private companies.

Cuts are widely favored but once you start talking about “rights” — even though, in the case of collective bargaining, they’re not really rights — people get nervous. In theory, that’s something that can be finessed by better GOP talking points, i.e. start referring to collective bargaining “privileges,” explain why we need a long-term fix to the PEU/Democratic racket, and hammer the point made today by Haley Barbour about how The One, in his majesty, hasn’t pushed to honor these alleged “rights” for federal workers. Realistically, though, you’re trying to undo decades of labor rhetoric that’s penetrated the public consciousness in just a few months. And Scott Walker, for all his smarts and political courage, hasn’t done the sort of sustained public campaign around Wisconsin to build support on his pet issue the way Christie has in New Jersey. Which is not to suggest that he shouldn’t proceed on the collective bargaining bill: As Kaus said yesterday, “He has the votes and can pass the bill whatever the polls say–just as Obama had the votes on his health care bill despite poll-measured popular disquiet.” Indeed. But we all know how that turned out for The One in November. I’m not sure why there’s so much resistance to these polls suggesting that Walker might, might face a backlash of his own. Some backlashes are worth it; that was the Democrats’ calculation on ObamaCare and it’ll have to be the GOP’s calculation on entitlement reform. And I’d bet that Walker, to his great credit, is fully prepared to accept it — so long as he thinks the next Democratic governor and legislature won’t undo his work immediately.


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…and 30% of that 68% are either clueless, asleep or didn’t understand the question.

98ZJUSMC on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

It’s morning in Allah-land and the bad news flow-eth freely!

lorien1973 on March 2, 2011 at 5:02 PM

What Walker needs to keep repeating is that collective bargaining prevents county and city from managing their budgets.

Kini on March 2, 2011 at 5:03 PM

This is bad news. This just proves there is a Labor Union member connected in one way or another to every family in the US.

Seven Degrees of Kevin Bacon Unionized Workers

portlandon on March 2, 2011 at 5:04 PM

You just can’t frame this debate as a “rights” issue. Americans simply have a knee-jerk response to that. They like rights. Rights are good.

You have to tackle this issue from a different POV: Should politicians represent taxpayers or public employees?

hisfrogness on March 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM

Similarly, 77% of the 1,000 adults interviewed for the poll think unionized state and municipal employees should have the same rights as those union members who work for private companies.

Clearly the biggest take away is people are ignorant of what collective bargaining really is and how much damage it can do in the hands of greedy public sector union bosses and corrupt democrats.

darwin on March 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM

I’m beginning to think most of the American public has no idea what collective bargaining is.The Rasmussen poll and the Quinieppic /sp poll say differently. Sorry I can’t spell the Q poll!

sandee on March 2, 2011 at 5:05 PM

Yeah, and that’s what the MSM would like the story to be. What they’re suppressing though, are the ways in which voters support what Walker and other governors and legislatures are doing.

Dan Collins on March 2, 2011 at 5:06 PM

One thing usually left out of this discussion is the fact that most local and state government employees are subject to protections of a Civil Service Commission. A civil service employee doesn’t need bargaining rights.

NoNails on March 2, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Polls, talking heads, and general media buzz are going to be all over the place. Walker needs to stand tall, immovable, and confident and victory is assured. As long as he leads, he wins.

pugwriter on March 2, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Dear Governor Walker: Do it anyway, they’ll get used to it. The people polled apparently have not figured out the connection between this kind of collective bargaining, contributions to election coffers and the fox guarding the hen house. This needs to be more carefully and widely explained.

jeanie on March 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

Nobody knows what collective bargaining is.

ctmom on March 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

62% of the voters are sitting in the wagon whipping the little pooch to pull harder only to slip in the snow and dig himself a hole that he buries himself in….

hawkman on March 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

Another poll that doesn’t smell right.

Mason on March 2, 2011 at 5:08 PM

The problem is the GOP has let the leftists define the debate.

I’ll bet most people think they’re trying to eliminate Collective Bargaining for ALL employees even though the question says otherwise.

The whole argument of public unions nominate en mass people who will vote them raises which the public unions use to nominate more people who will vote them raises which in turn makes any public union an instant political group seems to have been lost in the argument and the sound bite is “Ugh GOP hate union. Stoopid people listen to Faux lies too much!”

Obviously that 32% is GOP and the independents think that unions are still a good check on corporate greed… but not realizing the greedy corporate fat cats is US.

Skywise on March 2, 2011 at 5:08 PM

And I’d bet that Walker, to his great credit, is fully prepared to accept it — so long as he thinks the next Democratic governor and legislature won’t undo his work immediately.

I think he fully expects the next Democrat governor and legislature to reverse everything the GOP in Wisconsin is doing. Which is why he wants to eliminate collective bargaining for benefits as well as forced dues for union members. It’ll be a lot harder for the unions to regain the upper hand if they’re decimated by Walker’s bill. It’s unfortunate that measures like this are even necessary, but if the scene in Madison hasn’t convinced people that the public sector unions are about one step away from becoming the mafia, I don’t know what will.

Doughboy on March 2, 2011 at 5:09 PM

This is when we define what it means to be a leader.

rrpjr on March 2, 2011 at 5:10 PM

John Stossel’s “man on the street” segment that showed only about half of the people even knew what was happening in Wisconsin suggests that half the people in this poll were answering the question in a vacuum which, like I said previously, means that they will, of course, back “rights”.

hisfrogness on March 2, 2011 at 5:12 PM

I think most people get caught on the word “rights” as well. It’s not a right though. I don’t understand why more Republicans aren’t out explaining what collective baragining really is.

Emily M. on March 2, 2011 at 5:13 PM

It is a WSJ/NBC poll…aha…/

d1carter on March 2, 2011 at 5:14 PM

The poll not taken…..

What % of voters think it is ok for Unions to shut down government?

Limerick on March 2, 2011 at 5:14 PM

so long as he thinks the next Democratic governor and legislature won’t undo his work immediately.

oh but they would…in a heartbeat

cmsinaz on March 2, 2011 at 5:14 PM

WOW, I must of missed where Walker was eliminating CB

WoosterOh on March 2, 2011 at 5:15 PM

If you replace the word “PUBLIC” workers with “Government” workers the poll would flip. Almost everyone I talk to who is kind of following this story thinks “Public” workers are people who are NOT working for the Government.

brewcrew67 on March 2, 2011 at 5:15 PM

And if you don’t like the results of this poll, you will be beaten about the head and neck until you do.

Bishop on March 2, 2011 at 5:16 PM

Frankly speaking, this issue is not worth polling because the vast majority of respondents are too dense to either know what collective bargaining means or are unaware how it would affect them personally.
This is not a consensus issue, it is a leadership issue.
I may as well ask a random neighbor for critical fiscal advice.

jjshaka on March 2, 2011 at 5:16 PM

I guess it does say “Benefits” Which is what Walker wants to eliminate.

WoosterOh on March 2, 2011 at 5:17 PM

if accurate, this poll shows that the American people do not understand the inherent conflict of interest in the very concept of public sector unions.

IronDioPriest on March 2, 2011 at 5:19 PM

Hey, if the public employee union members like their union so much, it should be a piece of cake for them to collect the dues themselves, right? They’ll be lining up at the local to write a check, I’d imagine.

Mr. D on March 2, 2011 at 5:21 PM

Also as other have said- NBC may as well be a subsidiary of the DNC and the Wall St. Journal, with the exception of the opinion page, is just another liberal paper.
Push Polling Inc.

jjshaka on March 2, 2011 at 5:21 PM

Looks like the PEU & allies framing (with a big assist from the MSM) has begun to take.

Walker & GOP need to keep going back to the 401k issue. Most everyone not in the public sector gets that argument. It’s good wedge issue. (Well, the point is to win, right?)

Bruno Strozek on March 2, 2011 at 5:23 PM

FTA: If any “quirks” show up in the sample like they did with the NYT poll, we’ll revisit this again later.

Given the source, that’s pretty much a certainty.

slickwillie2001 on March 2, 2011 at 5:23 PM

Whenever the word “rights” comes up, people are generally going to side against the “rights taker”.

It’s a complex issue that most people do not fully understand – and the “rights” aren’t being completely elminated, just curtailed.

WisCon on March 2, 2011 at 5:25 PM

Cuts are widely favored but once you start talking about “rights” — even though, in the case of collective bargaining, they’re not really rights

Unfortunately, people are perfectly willing to spend other people’s money to support a supposed ‘Right’.

Chip on March 2, 2011 at 5:26 PM

Every Democrat I know is privately in favor of eliminating the difference between PUE benefits and private employees, regardless of what they say in public. This poll doesn’t worry me a bit.

MTF on March 2, 2011 at 5:26 PM

The poll shows 68% of the respondents would like public employees to contribute more for their retirement benefits and 63% want these workers to pay more for their health care. Only 29% and 34% find these moves either “mostly” or “totally unacceptable.” A clear majority, 58%, also find it acceptable to freeze government workers’ salaries as governments get a handle on spending, whereas 40% think that would be unacceptable.

Similarly, 77% of the 1,000 adults interviewed for the poll think unionized state and municipal employees should have the same rights as those union members who work for private companies.

Which is all to say — either the questions were poorly worded or intended to mislead, or those polled are incapable of adding small numbers in their heads.

Both things are probably true.

Jaibones on March 2, 2011 at 5:27 PM

What happens if the Dems come back? Will it be too late for Gov. Walker to save the jobs of the employees to be laid off because the bill didn’t get passed? As for the poll, we can’t worry about popular at this point.

Cindy Munford on March 2, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Surprise! A majority of people prefer a temporary band-aid that make everyone feel good for a little while over a structural cure that will prevent the problem from reoccuring in the future. Instant gratification wins the day again. Woohoo!

Scrappy on March 2, 2011 at 5:28 PM

People don’t realize what collective bargaining rights are. That’s first.

Second, they don’t understand that WI is only attempting to remove collective bargaining rights for benefits – NOT salaries.

Third, they don’t understand that most government workers in the United States do not have any collective bargaining rights at all.

Forth, I doubt most people realize that – if they are not a part of a UNION – then they themselves have no collective bargaining rights.

Ask the question this way … “Do you feel that it’s okay to give state union employees the same collective bargaining rights that YOU have? In other words – none?”

You’ll get a whole different answer to this poll.

HondaV65 on March 2, 2011 at 5:29 PM

Isn’t a WSJ poll really an NBC poll?

angryed on March 2, 2011 at 5:31 PM

I’m beginning to think most of the American public has no idea what collective bargaining is

BINGO…ding, ding, ding!!! Of course…it’s ALL being peddled to dilute support!
Even RINO’s are pushing with all their might
Total BS!!!

winston on March 2, 2011 at 5:31 PM

And then there was the Quinnipiac poll that said something else entirely. I am beginning to think it is all about how the question is asked.

Terrye on March 2, 2011 at 5:31 PM

Table of Union Donations To Wisconsin Absent Democrats

http://truebluenz.wordpress.com/2011/03/01/table-of-union-donations-to-wisconsin-absent-democrats/

The far left is losing it, BIG TIME!

Roy Rogers on March 2, 2011 at 5:32 PM

Show me the sample. I call BS on this poll too.

dogsoldier on March 2, 2011 at 5:33 PM

These were “exit polls” from the people who left the Madison State House, right?

Roy Rogers on March 2, 2011 at 5:34 PM

And then there was the Quinnipiac poll that said something else entirely. I am beginning to think it is all about how the question is asked.

Terrye on March 2, 2011 at 5:31 PM

And the Rasmussen poll that said what the Quinnipiac poll said.

1/2 the polls are right, 1/2 are wrong. Which is it?

angryed on March 2, 2011 at 5:34 PM

The poll taken last November in which Scott Walker said he would do exactly what he is doing is the one I would give the most credibility to.

thirteen28 on March 2, 2011 at 5:34 PM

The poll not taken…..

What % of voters think it is ok for Unions to shut down government?

Limerick on March 2, 2011 at 5:14 PM

Another poll I haven’t seen….

How many Wisconsin teachers would prefer to keep the money they’re now feeding to the democrat politicians? I mean, it’s not like Walker is even hinting that they would lose this money, just that the union won’t be getting it anymore.

runawayyyy on March 2, 2011 at 5:35 PM

I still say that by and large, most people in the country do not understand what is happening in Wisconsin. Any poll that is worded in terms of “taking away rights” of workers is not going to score high. If you asked those same people if teachers in public unions should have wage and benefit packages that are 30-40 percent above the average for private citizens, you would have an even larger majority in opposition.

nobody is for taking away rights, the only problem is that there is no right to collective bargaining.

exceller on March 2, 2011 at 5:40 PM

Why the delay in publishing the cross tabs? Somebody have to run out to Staples for some Whiteout?

Rational Thought on March 2, 2011 at 5:40 PM

I see on gateway pundit that the Dems are trying to recall 3 Republicans to re-take the Senate. Filled papers today. Seems they targeted those 3 because they barely won in the election.

sandee on March 2, 2011 at 5:42 PM

Rs never seem to argue their strongest point…and I never understand why. The current salaries of PEU is not generally that much of an issue (yes, there are horrible examples of excess).

The big deal is 10 or 15 years from now when the COLAs keep inflating the pension payments….as compared to priveate pensions, which do not have COLAs. The formlas for intial payment is something like 2.5% of your three year max salary times years worked.

So your max salary is 60K…years worked equal 30 (ie you are say 58 years old)….so that’s 60×0.025×30 eq 45K for retirement…annually…RICH. Now increase that by 3% per year for 25 years. You get the drift.

Now, maybe I’m wrong, but that’s my reading of the benes. Attn: Trolls…please tell me if I’m wrong (with citations)

So, PEU retirees will be in FLA on the beach collecting their 50K per year retirement while WI goes to hell.

r keller on March 2, 2011 at 5:43 PM

they keep pushing the ‘rights’ meme…

ugh

cmsinaz on March 2, 2011 at 5:44 PM

S_Y Poll:

72% don’t understand what collective bargaining means.

93% don’t understand the content of the Wisconsin Bill

swamp_yankee on March 2, 2011 at 5:44 PM

Can’t wait to see the crosstabs on how many of those polled actually pay state taxes. :-)

SouthernGent on March 2, 2011 at 5:45 PM

swamp_yankee on March 2, 2011 at 5:44 PM

that’s a poll i can trust

cmsinaz on March 2, 2011 at 5:45 PM

oh, and I forgot the big part.

The mismanagement and malfeasance in the Pension funds has left many of these very underfunded. So the “total compensation” figures you see are wrong because they do not reflect full funding obligations.

Non PEU people are being scammed by crooks and liars.

r keller on March 2, 2011 at 5:48 PM

Surprise! A majority of people prefer a temporary band-aid that make everyone feel good for a little while over a structural cure that will prevent the problem from reoccuring in the future. Instant gratification wins the day again. Woohoo!

Scrappy on March 2, 2011 at 5:28 PM

No matter what happens, these issues have to be addressed – unless your goal is to deliberately run the country into a brick wall.

Chip on March 2, 2011 at 5:49 PM

It’s an education problem. Keep quoting FDR’s letter

August 16, 1937

Mr. Luther C. Steward
President, National Federation of Federal Employees
10 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C.

My dear Mr. Steward:

As I am unable to accept your kind invitation to be present on the occasion of the Twentieth Jubilee Convention of the National Federation of Federal Employees, I am taking this method of sending greetings and a message.

Reading your letter of July 14, 1937, I was especially interested in the timeliness of your remark that the manner in which the activities of your organization have been carried on during the past two decades “has been in complete consonance with the best traditions of public employee relationships.” Organizations of Government employees have a logical place in Government affairs.

The desire of Government employees for fair and adequate pay, reasonable hours of work, safe and suitable working conditions, development of opportunities for advancement, facilities for fair and impartial consideration and review of grievances, and other objectives of a proper employee relations policy, is basically no different from that of employees in private industry. Organization on their part to present their views on such matters is both natural and logical, but meticulous attention should be paid to the special relationships and obligations of public servants to the public itself and to the Government.

All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management. The very nature and purposes of Government make it impossible for administrative officials to represent fully or to bind the employer in mutual discussions with Government employee organizations. The employer is the whole people, who speak by means of laws enacted by their representatives in Congress. Accordingly, administrative officials and employees alike are governed and guided, and in many instances restricted, by laws which establish policies, procedures, or rules in personnel matters.

Particularly, I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place in the functions of any organization of Government employees. Upon employees in the Federal service rests the obligation to serve the whole people, whose interests and welfare require orderliness and continuity in the conduct of Government activities. This obligation is paramount. Since their own services have to do with the functioning of the Government, a strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of Government until their demands are satisfied. Such action, looking toward the paralysis of Government by those who have sworn to support it, is unthinkable and intolerable. It is, therefore, with a feeling of gratification that I have noted in the constitution of the National Federation of Federal Employees the provision that “under no circumstances shall this Federation engage in or support strikes against the United States Government.”

I congratulate the National Federation of Federal Employees the twentieth anniversary of its founding and trust that the convention will, in every way, be successful.

Very sincerely yours,

[Franklin Roosevelt
President, United States]

LarryD on March 2, 2011 at 5:50 PM

It’s impossible to know how people would react if they were educated on the topic. Since only 12% of US workers are union, most don’t understand collective bargaining at all, let alone the issues involved with collective bargaining in the public sector.

Walker is doing the right thing no matter what the polls say.

Question, though: what is up with the supposed 24 deadline he issued?

Missy on March 2, 2011 at 5:50 PM

Eliminating collective bargaining rights for public-sector workers over health care, pensions or other benefits would be either “mostly unacceptable” or “totally unacceptable,” 62% of those surveyed said. Only 33% support such limits
The poll shows 68% of the respondents would like public employees to contribute more for their retirement benefits and 63% want these workers to pay more for their health care. Only 29% and 34% find these moves either “mostly” or “totally unacceptable.” A clear majority, 58%, also find it acceptable to freeze government workers’ salaries as governments get a handle on spending, whereas 40% think that would be unacceptable.

Did the pollsters bother to mention to the respondents that their answers to the questions were mutually exclusive?

Vashta.Nerada on March 2, 2011 at 5:52 PM

Again, it does not matter what the polls say. Nobody is going to lose an election over this issue. Who – aside from unionized public employees and other union members, is going to base their vote on this issue? Nobody. And, the people who will would never have voted republican anyway.

Sure, people when asked whether public employees’ “rights” to collectively bargain should be taken away, are going to say no. But they also say that their salaries and benefits should be reduced. Those 2 things are mutually exclusive. So, we are not talking about people who understand this issue at all.

The general public is never going to be educated enough on this issue to understand that PEU’s shouldn’t have collective bargaining “rights” in the first instance, and any time you ask someone who doesn’t understand the issues whether someone else’s “rights” should be taken away, they are going to answer no. So we are never going to see much headway in teh polls. But it does not matter.

Nobody will lose an election over voting to curb public employee unions’ power. And, you will have a double victory – 1) it is the right policy b/c it will allow more efficient and cheaper gov’t; and 2) it will dry up some of the dem’s campaign financing and other resources (phone banks, loaned vehicles for get-out-the-vote, etc.).

And, it’s not like the unions aren’t going to spend every conceivable dollar at this point running against Walker and the GOP in Wisconsin in the next election, so caving at this point would be idiotic on all fronts.

Monkeytoe on March 2, 2011 at 5:53 PM

As for the poll, we can’t worry about popular at this point.

Cindy Munford on March 2, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Exactly…

Republicans already know that the hard work that Obama is to much of a coward to do is going to be unpopular.

But we just watched democrats push their agenda for two years of Obamacare,cap and trade,refusing to seal the border,bailouts,and so on that was very unpopular with the American public….
……………trying to push the “listen to the people” line now will back them into a rhetorical corner, especially with the repeal of Obamacare on the agenda.

Right now democrats are defending their current “tax and spend” policies….
……backing entities like the unions that are unpopular with the American public……
……supporting a total subversion of the democratic process in Wisconsin while “threatening to kill elected officials” and trying to institute mob rule tactics.
…….watching our energy and food prices soar
….a foreign policy that channels Carter
…….and presiding over a stagnet economy with high unemployment…

As long as the GOP stays strong,united,and continues to offer real solutions with strategic messaging…
…… a few favorable polls are not going to save the democrats or their failed agenda.

Baxter Greene on March 2, 2011 at 5:55 PM

I seriously doubt that most people who aren’t in a union know what collective bargaining is. They probably think it’s like going into a flea market and haggling over the price of merchandise. How dare the government try to take that “right” away!

Buy Danish on March 2, 2011 at 5:57 PM

Phrase the questions correctly and union collective bargaining support will drop like a lead weight.

None of these polls should deter any leader from doing what’s neccessary to ensure fairness between taxpayer and employee. As it stands now the taxpayers are stuck in a bent over position taking it up the a$$.

darwin on March 2, 2011 at 5:57 PM

What percentage of these people polled know that most federal sector unions don’t have collective bargaining rights? Poll that question!

MCGIRV on March 2, 2011 at 5:58 PM

The land of the increasing moochers will implode.

Self-made in America! Sad, very sad.

Schadenfreude on March 2, 2011 at 5:58 PM

I seriously doubt that most people who aren’t in a union know what collective bargaining is. They probably think it’s like going into a flea market and haggling over the price of merchandise. How dare the government try to take that “right” away!

Buy Danish on March 2, 2011 at 5:57 PM

I honestly don’t know why the state or school distrcits can’t have set pay scales. If you don’t like what they pay go somewhere else. There shouldn’t be “haggling” over anything.

This is what we pay, here are the benefits. If you like them you’re hired, if not take a hike.

darwin on March 2, 2011 at 5:59 PM

The first question to ask is “Who do the unions ALWAYS financally support and vote for”? (ans. Demorats). The second question is “Do you want a Demorat negotiating on your behalf”? (ans. Are you stupid?). The third question is “Do you think that you interest would ever be fairly represented by a Demorat”? (ans. Are you stupid?).

inspectorudy on March 2, 2011 at 5:59 PM

None of these polls concerning people’s ‘preferences’ regarding PEU are going to matter a sweet goddamn when the Federal Gov’t and a majority of the states go belly-up. Although the Feds can always print $$$

alwyr on March 2, 2011 at 6:01 PM

Dear Governor Walker: Do it anyway, they’ll get used to it. The people polled apparently have not figured out the connection between this kind of collective bargaining, contributions to election coffers and the fox guarding the hen house. This needs to be more carefully and widely explained.

jeanie on March 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

I agree entirely.

I’ve watched this fairly closely but not exhaustively. I think Walker has been solid through it all, but he was slow to shift into high gear after the unions caved in on the contribution amounts. Walker allowed them to make the case that those were their concessions so that the ball was in his court to concede on collective bargaining. Walker should have said that the contribution matters were happening in all events. PERIOD. He should have then broken out the collective bargaining matters into a bundle of discrete rights and tied each one of them to a malfunction that hurts the state.

I appreciate the concern that you may lose some people in the weeds, but Walker needed (needs) to make a better argument against collective bargaining rights. For example, segregate the automatic payment of union dues. Why should the taxpayers facilitate a funding mechanism for one political party. Independents say, “Yeah, he’s right.” Explain that the civil service system gives these workers a level of job security that those in the private sector don’t have. I’m sure that he could distinguish several or many other aspects. Again, explain them and tie them to a malfunction.

BuckeyeSam on March 2, 2011 at 6:02 PM

Let’s see, 5 or 6 polls all saying “DON’T DO IT!!!” And the thumb suckers rise up in unison and scream “WE HAVE A POLL!!!”

For God sakes, ignore it and let the Dems/RINOS wail to themselves…

winston on March 2, 2011 at 6:04 PM

I wonder if we are going to see ANOTHER 47 pt swing in Tea Party support in this poll?

Freddy on March 2, 2011 at 6:08 PM

Democrats don’t care about polls anyway. Remember all those ObamaCare polls they ignored?

darwin on March 2, 2011 at 6:08 PM

You know, Wisconsin sounds like a good place to do some Tea Party recruiting.

Small government, not union controlled government.

darwin on March 2, 2011 at 6:09 PM

I honestly don’t know why the state or school distrcits can’t have set pay scales.
darwin on March 2, 2011 at 5:59 PM

But they do. At least in Georgia. Collective bargaining is about a lot more than wages, grievances being one of the stickier points as it makes it so difficult to fire an incompetent worker.

As Kaus said yesterday, “He has the votes and can pass the bill whatever the polls say–just as Obama had the votes on his health care bill despite poll-measured popular disquiet.”

I’m not sure this is an apt comparison. i.i.r.c., Obama/Pelosi/Reid didn’t have the votes until they used the reconciliation scheme and shut Scott Brown out as the nay vote needed to kill the bill in the Senate. They did this by fudging the C.B.O. numbers, lying about it being a deficit reducer and thus qualifying for reconciliation.

Buy Danish on March 2, 2011 at 6:15 PM

I don’t understand how these politicians ran on making public employees contribute more to their benefits and they were elected. Now, the public is against it?

Doesn’t make sense.

ramrants on March 2, 2011 at 6:24 PM

In theory, that’s something that can be finessed by better GOP talking points, i.e. start referring to collective bargaining “privileges,” explain why we need a long-term fix to the PEU/Democratic racket, and hammer the point made today by Haley Barbour about how The One, in his majesty, hasn’t pushed to honor these alleged “rights” for federal workers.

Riiiight. This is all about messaging. Wonder where we’ve heard that before? Oh yeah.

“He has the votes and can pass the bill whatever the polls say–just as Obama had the votes on his health care bill despite poll-measured popular disquiet.” Indeed. But we all know how that turned out for The One in November.

Except that Obama actually campaigned emphatically on passing health care while he ran for President. Walker didn’t say a word about removing the ability for public unions to collectively bargain while he campaigned for Governor. They’ve already conceded to increasing their personal payments. The public clearly supports union concessions along with unions’ continued ability to bargain. Walker is overreaching trying to pander to HA readers.

It’s ironic that you all sound so similar to Democrats who insist that polls against healthcare simply demonstrate that the public has been misinformed by the other side. You’re fighting the good fight of informing people of the truth after years of evil Democrats lying to them about unions. You sound just like whiny, arrogant Democrats.

underceij on March 2, 2011 at 6:26 PM

Again, it does not matter what the polls say. Nobody is going to lose an election over this issue. Who – aside from unionized public employees and other union members, is going to base their vote on this issue? Nobody. And, the people who will would never have voted republican anyway.

Monkeytoe on March 2, 2011 at 5:53 PM

EXACTLY

angryed on March 2, 2011 at 6:30 PM

In other news there is a poll…A POLL out that says 51% of people think the sun will NOT come up tomorrow…GULP. hmmmmm. Let’s analyze it, think about it, debate it…could it be…GULP!!!

winston on March 2, 2011 at 6:31 PM

WSJ poll: 62% oppose eliminating collective bargaining rights on benefits for public employees

Rights? American’s never agree in polls to take another’s “rights” away.

How about the right of a State to stay solvent? A right of a taxpayer to not support a corrupt union controlled benefit system?

Nevermind… just move along…

Shivas Irons on March 2, 2011 at 6:32 PM

Except that Obama actually campaigned emphatically on passing health care while he ran for President. Walker didn’t say a word about removing the ability for public unions to collectively bargain while he campaigned for Governor. They’ve already conceded to increasing their personal payments. The public clearly supports union concessions along with unions’ continued ability to bargain. Walker is overreaching trying to pander to HA readers.

underceij on March 2, 2011 at 6:26 PM

Actually Obama campaigned AGAINST the public option, then fought like hell to include it in his bill.

Walker campaigned to cut govt spending. He is doing just that. You can’t cut spending without cutting govt employee expenses. You can’t cut govt employee expenses without removing their ability to collectively bargain. Therefore Walker is doing just what he said he would do.

angryed on March 2, 2011 at 6:34 PM

It’s 6:35PM. Still no cross tabs. I wonder why? Oh wait I know, the NBC nightly newscast isn’t over and they need to pimp this poll a little more before anyone has a chance to debunk it once the D/R/I comes in at 40/20/40

angryed on March 2, 2011 at 6:36 PM

There is a big difference between rights and privileges. Americans have the right to vote. The state, barring a felony conviction, cannot take that right away. Driving, on the hand, is privilege. The state can refuse you the privilege of driving for a myriad of reasons including failure to pass a test showing you know the rules of the road or failing to purchase auto insurance.

Similarly the freedom of association is a right shared by all Americans and protected by the First Amendment. In contrast, collective bargaining is a special power occasionally granted to some unions. In upholding North Carolina’s ban on government union collective bargaining, a federal court wrote in Atkins vs. City of Charlotte: “All citizens have the right to associate in groups to advocate their special interests to the government. It is something entirely different to grant any one interest group special status and access to the decision making process.”

Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) budget bill in Wisconsin in no way infringes on any Americans’ right to associate and lobby government. What it does do is allow Wisconsin employees to choose not to join a union and keep their job at the same time. It also forces the government unions in Wisconsin to collect their own union dues instead of using the power of the state to withhold them directly from employee paychecks.

Now there is a question you’ll never see in a New York Times poll: “Do you favor forcing all state employees to join a union and empowering government unions to take union dues directly from employee paychecks?”

Shivas Irons on March 2, 2011 at 6:44 PM

They’ve already conceded to increasing their personal payments. The public clearly supports union concessions along with unions’ continued ability to bargain. Walker is overreaching trying to pander to HA readers.

underceij on March 2, 2011 at 6:26 PM

The public clearly has no idea what collective bargaining means and it’s destructive and corrupt effects when employed by public sector unions.

Walker’s effort is to keep jobs, give districts the ability to work within a realistic budget and also give people the option not to join a union. Right now any public employee has union dues deducted automatically from their paycheck whether they’re a union member or not.

Public unions have as much “right” to collective bargaining, and non-members money as I have to your paycheck.

darwin on March 2, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Some backlashes are worth it

Better believe it. The Democrats didn’t give a rip about any backlash when they passed that POS healthcare bill. The only way to undo some of their damage is to take some politically risky actions.

And just keep reminding everyone that 21 states and federal employees don’t have the privilege of colluding with each other. The unionists in the media are working overtime for the unions on this one, so it’ll be difficult.

BTW, do any of the media members who are unionists ever feel compelled to disclose that they are union stooges when they cover union issues? I haven’t seen any do that – except O’Reilly.

forest on March 2, 2011 at 6:56 PM

Just underscores how widely misunderstood and easy to manipulate the issue truly is. If this doesn’t teach people something…

Ahh, whatever.

surrounded on March 2, 2011 at 7:03 PM

 
Better questions…
 
Do you favor forcing all state employees to join a union?
 
Are you in favor of requiring the government to take union dues directly from employee paychecks?”
 

ignatzk on March 2, 2011 at 7:04 PM

Was that how the poll was worded, as if Walker wants to eliminate all collective bargaining rights, with zero explanation that he’s targeting only certain CBA rights or privileges and that he has reasons for wanting to do so? If a poll said 62% oppose eliminating the automobile, that wouldn’t surprise me either.

Erich66 on March 2, 2011 at 7:13 PM

hisfrogness on March 2, 2011 at 5:12 PM

Did you see the segment on F&F with Frank Luntz? He made a point of saying that if you word the question with Public Union, or Government, people support the public union, not realizing, they work for the government.

People either need to know what the questions really mean when answering, and these d@mn polls need to stop being disingenuous with their questions. Knowing that which way they phrase their question, will always give them the outcome they desire.

Honesty, and integrity seem to be a think of the past now. :(

capejasmine on March 2, 2011 at 7:15 PM

Just as a thought:

The morning I first heard about the protests… I was thinking… those teacher unions have got to be brought under control… then the TV said the governor wanted to take away collective bargaining rights… I thought… whoa! That’s harsh, that’s going too far…

Then I read up on what was really going on and my first inclination was right.

So, the knee jerk reaction to “take away collective bargaining rights” is going to get this kind of numbers. The unions have hit on the perfect “messaging”.

But if you can get beyond that sound bite phrase to the facts of what’s going on you should be able to get the numbers to move.

Educate!

petunia on March 2, 2011 at 7:22 PM

It is quite obvious in all polls that the results depend on how the question is phrased.

Amjean on March 2, 2011 at 9:08 PM

John Stossel explained to O’Reilly the polling inference using bargaining “rights” instead of referencing bargaining “power”, that American’s unaware of details will inevitably kneejerk the reaction to protect “rights” as if protecting Constitutional Rights, when the only “right” involved is a legislated matter, now unaffordable, being re-legislated in order to financially meet legal obligations. In argument of principle, Stossel criticizes the Governor’s inequality in practice, selectively practicing who keeps and who loses the bargaining “right”/power; that inequality in practice weakening the Governor’s rational premise for interference.

maverick muse on March 3, 2011 at 7:35 AM

77% of the 1,000 adults interviewed for the poll think unionized state and municipal employees should have the same rights as those union members who work for private companies

HUH?

BigMike252 on March 3, 2011 at 8:10 AM

First this is NOT a WSJ poll and if you click the link it states:

WSJ/NBC Poll

So you need to change your headline.

In addition when you read the article it is not actually a WSJ/NBC poll because they outsourced it to 2 different polling organizations.

“The poll, conducted by the polling organizations of Peter D. Hart and Bill McInturff”

I have never heard of these polling organizations before so have no idea on their credibility or accuracy.

JeffinSac on March 3, 2011 at 10:28 AM