Baumgartner calls for special session to bust unions in wake of Machinists' vote

OLYMPIA -- State Sen. Michael Baumgartner, R-Spokane, is calling for a special legislative session to make Washington a right-to-work state following the Boeing Machinists' failure to approve a new working contract Wednesday night.

Baumgartner wanted Gov. Jay Inslee to convene a special legislative session as soon as possible, the state senator said in a release.

"Washington is a hub of aerospace; we must do everything we can to keep it that way," Baumgartner said. "My contacts in the aerospace community tell me that Washington must take bold actions to keep these jobs here."

Baumgartner introduced legislation earlier this year that would make union dues optional and allow employees to decide if they wanted to join a union.  Under Baumgartner’s proposed legislation, Washington would become a right-to-work state if rates for workers’ compensation, the state-controlled industrial-insurance system run by the state Department of Labor and Industries, continue to increase.

Baumgartner said that over the past decade right-to-work states have seen 9 percent higher growth in manufacturing than other states, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis.

"We need to give Boeing, and all of our employers an environment conducive to growth and job-creation, and making Washington a right-to =-work state is the key step to making that happen," Baumgartner said.