An outsider looking in might think Mark Janus has the weight of the world on his shoulders.
The child support specialist for the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services is less than three weeks away from oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court in his case challenging forced union dues.
The court’s decision could change labor law across the country, impacting hundreds of thousands of government workers in 22 states without right-to-work laws.
Janus admits he’s a little nervous about the Feb. 26 hearing before the highest court in the country, but he’s clearly ready for it.
“Pretty nervous. I mean, this is a big case,” he said when I asked him how he was feeling with the oral arguments quickly approaching. “It’s not intimidating, but the nervous[ness] comes from the fact that this is a big case. And that my name is very prominent on a lot of the docket sheets and the other material.”
Indeed, if the Supreme Court rules in his favor, as many expect it will, Janus vs. AFSCME will be known as the case law that gave public employees their First Amendment rights back.
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