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By Eric Heinz

What was supposed to be a landmark decision hinging on a deciding vote later this summer in the case of local teacher Rebecca Friedrichs and supporters attempting to abolish compulsory union dues for teachers came to a halt, at least temporarily, in the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday.

Friedrichs, a teacher in Anaheim and a resident of San Clemente, has been fighting to have case law halt states’ ability to require teachers to pay union dues in the Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association case that has captivated this year’s legal discussions.

Rebecca Friedrichs. Photo: Courtesy of Free to Teach
Rebecca Friedrichs. Photo: Courtesy of Free to Teach

That was until Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died unexpectedly in mid-February. Scalia was supposed to be the swing vote in a case that could have altered the landscape of unions nationwide. Now that the Supreme Court is locked at 4-4, a one-sentence decision was submitted Tuesday.

“The judgment is affirmed by an equally divided Court,” the decision stated.

In a press release published Tuesday, the Center for Individual Rights, representing Friedrichs, stated they intend to file for a rehearing.

“…(T)he Court will have a compelling reason to grant a rehearing,” the press release stated.

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