(May 4) — The Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO, the state’s largest union organization, released its 2012 Legislative Voting Records on Friday, just in time for the WSLC’s political endorsement convention scheduled to begin Saturday morning.
The WSLC’s voting records are published after each session of the State Legislature so that rank-and-file union members can understand how their elected representatives voted on issues of concern to working families.
The votes counted this year included several that the WSLC supported, such as the “Jobs Now” supplemental capital budget, legislation implementing Washington’s Health Benefit Exchange, and the Marriage Equality Act. It also counts votes on labor-opposed legislation, including the Senate Republican version of the operating budget, the attack on school workers’ collective bargaining rights, and legislation cutting state employees’ pension benefits.
The latter vote on pension benefits was “weighted” to count as 25% of each state legislator’s 2012 voting record “because of the seriousness of this political (not fiscal) attack on state employees, who have already suffered disproportionately throughout the economic downturn,” reads the WSLC 2012 Legislative Report that accompanies the voting records.
In 2010, the WSLC developed a more comprehensive system of evaluating incumbent legislators that includes scores on sponsorship of good and bad legislation affecting working families, and advocacy of that legislation in Olympia and in their home districts. However, because the extended legislative session(s) ran so long into April, those Sponsorship and Advocacy scores — which are based on surveys of WSLC-affiliated unions’ lobbyists and local labor leaders — are not yet available. They will be added to the voting record in the coming days.
Click here to see the 2012 WSLC Voting Records online.
If you have questions about the WSLC Voting Records, past and present, contact the WSLC’s David Groves via email or by calling 206-281-8901 ext. 19.