Batinick unsure Janus ruling will help state
Rep. Mark Batinick (R-Plainfield) isn’t quite sure what to make of the Supreme Court’s recent decision dictating that non-union workers are not obligated to pay union dues.
“I’m going to reserve judgment at this point,” Batinick told the Will County Gazette. “Right now, I still don’t know quite what to make of it.”
The high court ruled 5-4 in favor of Mark Janus, a child support specialist from Illinois who argued that the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) violated his First Amendment rights by engaging in political speech with which he does not agree.
Supporters of the ruling argue the decision in Janus v. AFSCME could go a long way toward cleaning up the state by taking the specter of politics out of seemingly every decision.
The Illinois Policy Institute estimates that five major government unions in Illinois doled out a combined $46 million in political contributions to both Republicans and Democrats over a 12-year period ending in 2014.
“There’s a chance this will make things better,” said Batinick, who is running for re-election in the 97th District, in November’s general election. “I just have to give it some more thought.”
Janus was represented in the proceedings by the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation and the Liberty Justice Center.
The Supreme Court’s ruling overturns a 41-year-old ruling from Abood v. Detroit Board of Education.
First elected in 2014, Batinick has made the issues of fiscal responsibility and pension reform platforms of his re-election campaign.
He recently weighed in on an ATTOM Data Services study that found nearly 400,000 property owners across the state now owe at least 25 percent more on their loans than their property is worth.
“It’s shameful that we’re at this point and things have become this hard for people,” he told the Will County Gazette. “Government shouldn’t be in the business of playing a role in making life this hard for people.”