T■ By Thomas D. Elias / Contributed here’s a good chance that using union dues for politics will become harder within a year or two and, one thing is for sure: big labor will not easily accept that kind of new reality. Three times in the past 15 years, ballot initiative campaigns led by conservative Republicans tried unsuccessfully to truncate the power and influence of California’s labor unions, both public employee organizations and others. “Paycheck protection” was the label applied to those efforts, which sought to prevent unions from using dues money raised via automatic payroll deductions for political purposes. The most recent such effort, in 2012, looked to force unions

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