Right-to-work laws have definite effects. A 1987 study of 21 right-to-work states found that the passage of such laws reduced union membership—by 5 to 10 percent in the first five years. As a result, the wealth of corporate shareholders grows—by 2 to 4 percent, according to one study. Apparently, this comes out of workers’ pockets: An Economic Policy Institute study found that in right-to-work states, average wages were about 3.2 percent lower (or $1,500 a year) than in other states.
Yet no studies conclusively demonstrate that right-to-work laws create more jobs or a more vibrant economy. Surveys of both large corporations and small manufacturers about their location decisions have found that right to work had little to no bearing—more influential factors included highway accessibility and construction costs. And although low-wage, right-to-work states had some success in luring manufacturing to the South in the mid-20th century, today such jobs are likely to head overseas from both the North and the South.
From In These Times: Read the full story by David Moberg at //inthesetimes.org/article/17735/scott-walkerstrikes-again