Most public employee labor union dues are used to elect politicians or to pass (or oppose) propositions. The actual percentage of these dues spent on politics is unknown, as the unions report whatever they want, and there’s no independent audit. There is no oversight of this reporting process by the IRS, FTB, or any other government agency.
The unions generally claim that about 25%-30% of union dues are spent on politics and politicians. In the rare instance where a court looks in detail at labor union political spending, the figure the court comes up with is usually a more realistic (but in my estimation still understated) 60% to 70%.
Up until the Trump tax reform, one ridiculous subsidy for the labor unions was to allow such dues to be deducted by individual union members on their federal and state income tax filings. It was allowed as a “miscellaneous deduction,” which combined with other miscellaneous write-offs had to exceed 2% of adjusted gross income (AGI). to be used as a deduction.
In essence, this allowed many union members to deduct certain insurance payments buried in the… Read More