The Buzz

Labor unions are spending big on Chris Koster’s campaign for Missouri governor

Attorney General Chris Koster has taken in more than $320,000 in donations this week from labor unions.

That brings the total donated by unions to Koster – the Democratic Party’s presumptive nominee for governor – to more than $2 million in the past six months.

Koster has enjoyed huge labor support, thanks in part to his vehement opposition to a right-to-work law, which would prohibit requiring an employee to become a union member or to pay dues to a labor organization as a condition of employment.

The Republican-dominated state legislature has been able to pass right-to-work legislation but has not been able to muster up enough support to override a veto by Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat who is leaving office this year because of term limits.

All four of the Republicans running for their party’s nomination – Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder, former Missouri House Speaker Catherine Hanway, businessman John Brunner and former Navy SEAL Eric Greitens – have pledged to sign a right-to-work bill.

Since Democrats stand no chance of winning back a legislative majority any time soon, ensuring Koster replaces Nixon in the governor’s mansion is labor’s top priority heading into the November election.