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Report: Government unions spent $13M in Minnesota for 2021-22 election

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(The Center Square) – Minnesota ranked third for the most public sector union Political Action Committee Spending in state and local elections in the 2021-2022 election cycle, according to a new report.

A new Commonwealth Foundation report, The Battle for Worker Freedom: How Government Unions Fund Politics Across The Country, found the four largest government unions were active in every state.

The National Education Association, American Federation of Teachers, American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, and Service Employees International Union, – the four largest government unions – spent $708.8 million on politics during the 2021–22 election cycle.

They spent the most in Illinois ($27.9 million), California ($24.9 million), Minnesota ($13.2 million), Pennsylvania ($12.1 million) and Washington ($7.5 million). Together, these five states accounted for nearly 60% of all state PAC expenditures.

Government union spending through political action committees at the state and local levels totaled $145.1 million during the 2021-22 election cycle.

The report found that nearly 60% of all union political spending comes from union dues while government union-connected political action committee contributions accounted for about 40% of political spending.

Member PAC deductions must be voluntary but are deducted automatically through the taxpayer-funded public payroll system in many states.

PAC contributions were heavily one-sided, with 95.7% of contributions going to Democratic candidates and organizations across state and federal elections.

“In partisan terms, most of the PAC money given directly to federal candidates went to Democrats,” the report says. “Of the $8.34 million directly contributed, $8.29 million went to Democrats. Republicans received $39,000 and independents received $7,000.”

The report concludes that the spending of government unions influences states nationwide.

“Armed with millions of members and numerous special legal privileges, the four largest government unions have amassed significant political power,” the report says. “With this power, government unions have dedicated significant financial resources toward maintaining and expanding the legal structures from which they derive their power.”

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