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New Jersey’s Interest In Ohio Election Results

Mark Lyons, Getty Images

New Jersey was not the only state where mid-term elections were held. There were key elections and ballot issues around the country that were being closely watched.

In Ohio, Labor unions are celebrating one of their biggest victories in decades — the rejection by Ohio voters of a law curbing collective bargaining rights for the state’s public workers.

This issue was of particular interest in New Jersey, where public employee unions lost their big fight against landmark pension and benefits reforms. Governor Chris Christie muscled the reforms through a complicit Democratic Legislature in what is considered his biggest victory. Unions vowed to take their revenge on election day, on republicans and democrats, who supported the reforms. Ultimately the union efforts had no impact on last nights elections.

However, there are many who say the Ohio vote shows organized labor remains a potent political force that can’t be ignored. Union leaders say they hope it brings about a resurgence for a labor movement long in decline and sends a strong message to other states where lawmakers are thinking about restricting union rights.

But unions also want to use the outcome as a spark to help re-elect President Barack Obama and put more Democrats in office next year. Obama praised the vote. Ohio’s Republican governor says he respects the voters’ decision and will spend time reflecting on the result.

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