First of all, better jobs and higher wages are things that working Missourians all seek to achieve. However, how we get there is another matter. A yes vote on Proposition A is key in reversing recent trends relative to other states.
The economic data and evidence are clear. It is not where we are as a state; it is the direction we’re going. It should not be protection of wages or jobs for about 10 percent of the dues-paying unionized working population, but rather greater opportunity for 100 percent of dues- and non-dues-paying working Missourians.
Whether we like it or not, business and capital tend to go to states with the least restrictions to compete in global markets. It is also those same companies that tend to have the best pay, benefits and career opportunities for workers.
We need to compare Missouri to similar states that are recently successful and determine what they are doing right. Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin are states that have in recent years passed "right to work" and are growing faster than Missouri with opportunities for better jobs and higher wages.
Proposition A should not be a political issue. It is an economic one. All working Missourians and small businesses have a stake in the outcome. A yes vote will be an important first step.
Edmund A. Martin • Jefferson City