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U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Union Free Speech Argument

March 4 , 2009

The United States Supreme Court decided an important school district case on February 24, 2009.  This case, styled Ysursa vs. Pocatello Education Association, involved Idaho's Right to Work Act.  This legislation permits public employees to authorize payroll deductions for general union dues, but prohibits such deductions for political activities. A group of public employee unions sued, alleging that the ban on payroll deductions for political activities violated the First and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States Constitution. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld Idaho's ban on political payroll deductions, as it applied to local government units such as school districts, holding that the ban does not infringe on the unions' constitutional rights. Therefore, it reversed the decision of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in favor of the unions.