Campaign Notebook: 3rd Hampshire candidates blast SCOTUS decision

Published: 6/29/2018 11:46:46 PM

AMHERST — Both candidates campaigning to become the Democratic nominee for the 3rd Hampshire District seat are criticizing the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in the Janus v. AFSCME case, which prevents public-sector unions from automatically collecting dues from workers who benefit from their collective-bargaining and other services.

Mindy Domb, of Amherst, said the decision is “devastating.”

“I am concerned with the impact of the ruling on the right to bargain collectively and on the rights of working people,” Domb said. “I stand in strong solidarity with public sector workers — educators, nurses, firefighters, police officers and public servants — and the unions that represent them and give them a ‘collective voice’ to make sure that jobs are well paid with living wages, safe and secure.”

Domb offers a plan to deal with the consequences of the decision.

“I recommit to make it easier to join and unite in unions, to build more power and fairness for all working people, and to protect working families and basic workplace rights,” Domb said. “When unions win, we all win.”

Eric Nakjama, of Amherst, said that the decision wouldn’t have been made if Republican U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky hadn’t blocked President Obama’s appointment of Merrick Graland to the court.

“The Supreme Court’s Janus decision is a landmark moment in the GOP’s war on working people in America,” Nakajima said. “The gap between wealthy and working families doesn’t happen by accident – it happens through decisions like this.”

Nakajima would work to counter the impact of the decision.

“As your state representative, I will work tirelessly to fight for a commonwealth in which work is met with fair wages and benefits and the right to organize and collectively bargain is never infringed,” Nakajima said.

The candidate who wins the primary on Sept. 4 will take on incumbent Rep. Solomon Goldstein-Rose, I-Amherst, Nov. 6, to serve the district that includes Amherst, Pelham and Precinct 1 in Granby.

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