Sen. Sampson statement on the Labor Committee’s 2021 Agenda

February 3, 2021

State Senator Rob Sampson (R-16), well-known as a consistent and outspoken voice for small government and pro-freedom policy, adds to his resume this legislative session by serving as the ranking senator of the legislature’s Labor and Public Employees Committee.  Currently, legislative committee leaders are meeting informally to screen proposed bills to determine which issues to tackle, or not tackle, this legislative session. Democrats hold significant majorities in both chambers, but it is customary for their Republican counterparts to participate, if only symbolically, in the process.


Yesterday, Tuesday February 2, 2021, the legislature’s Labor Committee also held its bill screening.  Senator Sampson shared the following statement on the Labor Committee’s agenda for the 2021 Session in reaction to the meeting:


I don’t take it personally but it’s abundantly clear that the majority party plans to move 100% of their agenda and 0% of the minority’s, though there may be some small overlap on less fundamental or ideological topics.  On the issues that define us – a freedom based representative republic vs subjects in an authoritarian nanny-state, there is no common ground at all.


Here are a few examples from among my proposed bills that democratic leaders have chosen NOT to address – meaning they will not be drafted into bills or receive so much as a public hearing:

  • SB 367 to increase the prevailing wage thresholds for renovations, a problem which has had a significant financial impact on towns across Connecticut ultimately driving up property taxes.
  • SB 366 to require binding arbitration decisions be resolved timely.
  • SB 663 would reverse the state government’s interference in private contracts that continues to damage the home care industry.
  • SB 664 To provide clear disclosures on collective bargaining agreements so workers know what their choices and rights are.


These policies would make meaningful changes to bolster our economy, create jobs, protect limited municipal budgets, and safeguard worker’s rights. In place of these proposals, majority democrats are choosing to pursue onerous and costly “reforms” which will force even more business owners to close their doors. These shuttered businesses will symbolize the white flag of surrender to a state government that has squeezed nearly every dollar and ounce of patience from them due to the ever-growing list of fees, taxes, mandated employment compensation and benefits in combination with the pandemic requirements.


These are some things they instead plan to do:

  • Expanding workers compensation to included pandemic related illnesses. This will bankrupt businesses and municipalities, and cause property taxes to skyrocket.
  • New and increased mandates on employers.
  • Prohibiting employers from researching a job applicant’s criminal record.
  • Prohibiting employers from educating employees on labor or political policy – an openly unconstitutional proposal hostile to personal choice or freedom.
  • Unionization of Uber employees


These measures will not help our state and local economies.  They fly in the face of the pleas I receive every day from local leaders and business owners to make Connecticut a more affordable and reasonable place to live, work, and retire.  It is no doubt Democrats have been successful in maintaining their electoral majorities, but I suspect it has little to do with many of their policy choices.  The Democrats control two thirds of the legislature, but I doubt they could achieve majority support if they brought these proposals to the people directly.


My Democratic counterparts are perfectly nice people, and we work much more harmoniously than the average person might imagine – something I am proud of.  However, Connecticut citizens must realize that elections have real consequences.  The Democratic majority has been on the rise since 2016, and as their numbers grow, their respect and consideration for Republican initiatives has diminished. When it comes to the overall direction of the state, there is a canyon-sized disparity between Hartford’s Democrats and Republicans – a symptom of the Democrat party’s hard shift towards democratic socialism over the last decade.


I will continue to use my voice to advocate for American principles of freedom, opportunity, and limited government.   I suspect I will lose most of the votes in the Labor committee this year, but I will certainly be on the record reminding those who listen what is at stake.