SPRINGFIELD, Ill.—Mark Janus, the plaintiff in the Supreme Court case that held public-sector workers can’t be required to pay fees to the unions that represent them, is quitting his state job to work for the far-right policy/propaganda organization tank that backed his case.
The Illinois Policy Institute, whose litigation arm represented Janus, announced July 20 that he would start Aug. 1 as a senior fellow and spokesperson on labor issues. “I am grateful for the opportunity to spend the remainder of my career doing something I believe in,” said Janus, 65. He had made $71,000 a year as a child-support specialist for the state Department of Healthcare and Family Services, but argued that paying about $45 a month in representation fees to AFSCME Council 31 violated his free-speech rights because he disagreed with the union’s opposition to Gov. Bruce Rauner’s efforts to cut state workers’ pensions. “Once again it’s clear that this court case was never about Mark Janus, but about billionaires like Bruce Rauner and big-money corporate funders launching a political attack on the freedom of working people to speak up together through a strong union,” Council 31 spokesperson Anders Lindall said.