The email lists were buzzing. I received nearly a dozen invitations to go down to Concord and demonstrate in favor of the Right to Work law (HB 474). It was hinted, but no promises were made, that it would be voted upon today. The house speaker, Bill O'Brien, has been biding his time, hoping to scare up a few more votes. But time is running out, and right-to-work will be dead at the end of this session, with out a vote, so maybe it's time.
Any how I passed the invitations along on the up country email list, and set the alarm for 6:45. I set off for Concord thru early morning ground fog and light rain. I parked in the big shopping center, the one with Market Basket, the state Liquor Store, and Burlington Coat Factory. Our side had coffee and muffins and bright green T-shirts in the capitol cafeteria. I encountered a few stalwart north country types, Omer and Henry Ahearn, and Russ Cumbee. At nine o'clock we all file into the capitol visitors gallery. I was pleased to see we had as many of our people in green T-shirts as there were union guys in red T-shirts. Apparently the email gets around.
Business opened with CACR 14, a constitutional amendment having something to do with schools. I'd heard of it, but cannot remember whether it continued Court supervision of schools, or ended it. CACR 14 used up an hour before it was voted down and killed for the rest of this legislative session.
Then Rick Perry addressed the legislature. Perry laid into Wall St and Washington, accusing both parties of engaging in corrupt crony capitalism. Looks like it could be a grim year for Wall Streeters. The union guys were rude enough to boo Perry.
After Rick ran down, Huntsman popped up and spoke as well. Huntsman sounded more mature and less "hot button issue" than Perry.
Finally we moved onto the main event, HB 474, the right to work law. Both sides put up some speakers, and by noontime, the speaker called for a roll call vote (actually a push button vote recorded by computer). In New Hampshire, the push button vote lasts for a mere 30 seconds, unlike the US Congress which can let 25 minutes go by on a push button vote. In New Hampshire the legislators have to stay in their seats and make up their minds.
Too bad, when the red LED stopped blinking, the vote was 240 in favor to 139 against. Since this was a veto over ride vote, we needed two thirds (253 votes) to override Lynch's veto. Close but no cigar.
Too bad. Kiss that automobile assembly plant goodby. Apparently the campaign donations and votes of a mere 9% of the New Hampshire workforce are enough override the needs of the 91% of our workforce who are not in a union. Democracy in action.