May 12, 2015 05:41 PM

Rep. Stuart Bishop
Photo by Robin May

A contentious anti-union bill has hit a snag in the Louisiana House, with a widely-anticipated debate scrapped amid strong pushback from police, firefighters and teachers.

The proposal would ban government payroll offices from automatically deducting union dues from public worker paychecks.

The bill's sponsor, Republican Rep. Stuart Bishop of Lafayette, postponed debate scheduled for Tuesday. And it's not clear when — or if — he'll reschedule.

Bishop says lawmakers would rather focus on the $1.6 billion budget shortfall.

Proponents, including the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry, say they philosophically oppose the government deducting union dues that could go to political causes. But privately they have said their intent is to cut off the flow of money to unions.

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