It's amazing how union members will vote against their own best interests, particularly when a 'yes' vote will preserve the jobs of fellow union members. In this case the State Employees Association of New Hampshire voted to turn down a two year contract that would prevent the layoff of 250+ state employees by requiring state workers to take 19 days of unpaid furlough over a period of 2 years.
With the rejection of the contract, layoff notices will be going out before the end of the month. At a time when the state has financial problems and needs to reduce spending, taking a course of action that ensures the loss of jobs seems counter to the union's purpose, doesn't it?
What did the union want that caused the union leadership to urge a 'no' vote on the contract?
A guarantee there would be no layoffs.
Since when does any state provide guaranteed employment? Since when can any union tie the hands of the state, particularly when the economic situation is unstable and there's no way to forecast the state of the economy 6 months, a year, or a year and a half from now? If the economic situation worsens and the state needs to make further cuts, why should their hands be tied, preventing them from balancing a budget in deficit?
Such is the arrogance of the union that they think they should be immune from the effects of a bad economy.