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Demonstrators in New York in solidarity with union workers across the country. Photo: Michael Nagle/Getty Images

Missouri voters, through a labor-organized veto referendum on Tuesday, overwhelmingly rejected the state's "right-to-work" law passed by the Republican-controlled legislature last year, which bans compulsory union fees in all private-sector workplaces.

Why it matters: This is a major victory for unions, which have spent millions on a campaign to defeat the law that would have diminished their effectiveness. Missouri has become the latest battleground over union fees following the Supreme Court’s conservative-majority decision in June that public-sector unions cannot mandate mandatory fees from non-members who refuse to join.

The details: The law was defeated by a 2-to-1 margin. The vote followed a referendum filed by unions last year to overturn the policy that already existed in 27 other states.

  • The highly partisan fight over union fees has been growing in other states. Since 2012, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Wisconsin and West Virginia have become right-to-work states.

Supporters of the policy said it would strengthen states economically and gave workers a choice on whether to join unions.

The other side: Union leaders argue that its part of a concerted effort by Republicans to weakened their power because labor groups have traditionally supported and provided money to Democratic candidates in crucial states.

  • The fees collected can only be used for collective bargaining, not for political purpose. Unions argue that nonmembers who pay fees benefit from contract negotiations, salary and time off, so everyone should make a financial contribution to prevent freeloading.

What they're saying: Richard Trumka, president of AFL-CIO, the nation’s largest federation of labor unions, said in a statement: "Missouri is the latest sign of a true groundswell, and working people are just getting started. The defeat of this poisonous anti-worker legislation is a victory for all workers across the country."

Go deeper

Biden to tap telecom trio for NTIA, FCC posts

Jessica Rosenworcel. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

President Joe Biden on Tuesday is expected to name Alan Davidson as head of the telecom arm of the Commerce Department, Jessica Rosenworcel as chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission and Gigi Sohn as a commissioner at the FCC, according to a person familiar with the process.

Why it matters: Internet availability and affordability has been a key policy priority for the White House, but the administration lagged in tapping people for the agency posts that oversee the issues.

19 mins ago - Technology

Facebook seeks fountain of youth

Data: Piper Sandler Taking Stock With Teens Study; Chart: Axios Visuals

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Monday said that the company is pivoting its strategy to focus on young adults, following reports that teens have fled its apps.

Why it matters: A series of stories based on leaked whistleblower documents suggest the company sees the aging of its user base as an existential threat to its business.

Too big to cover alone: Newsrooms team up

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

News outlets are increasingly willing to work together on big, multifaceted stories — including this week's reporting on leaked documents from a Facebook whistleblower.

Why it matters: Collaborative efforts help bring more resources to bear on complex stories, some of which require a global reporting effort. But they require high degrees of coordination, and competition can sometimes get in the way.