Indiana blogger Steve Hinnefeld writes that the legislature is taking aim again at the teachers’ unions. With a supermajority, the Republicans are set to erode the organized voice of teachers, whose unions fund Democrats. He writes:

I have to pull out the Henry Adams quote at least once every session of the Indiana General Assembly: “Politics, as a practice, whatever its professions, has always been the systematic organization of hatreds.”

How else do you explain Senate Bill 486, an “education deregulation” bill that seems to be largely about punishing the Indiana State Teachers Association and the Indiana Federation of Teachers.

The measure does include some deregulation, but a key component would repeal current law that gives teachers, through their unions, a voice in how their schools operate. Blocking it has become the top priority for the ISTA and IFT, which brought hundreds of teachers to the Statehouse last week to protest.

Why would the Republican supermajority want to punish the unions? Well, because they support Democrats. The ISTA’s political action committee spent over $1 million in the 2022 election year, much of it to assist Democratic legislative candidates. No one else comes close when it comes to supporting the party.

The GOP has chipped away at union strength since they took control of all branches of state government 13 years ago. A big blow came in 2011, when lawmakers decreed that collective bargaining could cover only salaries and pay-related fringe benefits, not working conditions. They have also adopted so-called right-to-work rules and outlawed “fair share fees” for teachers who won’t pay for union benefits.

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