It was just a matter of time. A group of state employees has filed a lawsuit to halt the collective bargaining executive order issued by Gov. Bob Holden. We hope and believe the courts will side with the state workers in their effort to overturn the controversial unionization mandate issued by Holden.
As you'll recall, Holden surprised virtually everyone in the state in June when he single-handedly decided to unionize nearly 30,000 state employees. Much later it was learned that the foundation for Holden's grand move was formulated even before he took office. No sooner had Holden caved in to the union interests than many associated with the union movement helped bail the Governor out of his inaugural bills that topped $1 million.
We said then and repeat today that Holden's decision stinks from many standpoints. Similar legislation to extend unionization has failed in recent years but that didn't stop Holden. He was also strangely silent when letters surfaced between his office and union lawyers outlining the collective bargaining proposal. Holden has yet to fully answer his critics. But he'll soon have his day in court.
Sen. Peter Kinder of Cape Girardeau is the prime mover behind the lawsuit. But he was joined by a Democratic colleague and representatives from employees impacted by the union mandate.
It seems so clear to me that Holden clearly overstepped his bounds in issuing the executive order. His mistake was compounded by his own dumb timing to make the move when he sorely needed cash to retire his expensive inaugural debt. Even if the move was a correct one, the timing was as poor as it gets. None of this has seemed to faze the Governor however.
Holden's spokesman was mute Monday when asked about the lawsuit. He reserved comment until he had time to fully read the details. Rest assured, when the comments are forthcoming they will include a personal attack on those who filed the suit. That's simply the Holden style of politics.
This case will likely pale in the headlines because of other pressing national affairs. But it will be interesting to watch and see how the courts rule on legislative vs. executive powers in Missouri.