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New Jersey State police turn back a large gathering of public employee union members and supporters Monday, June, 20, 2011, in Trenton, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Bucking the state’s powerful public employee unions, the New Jersey Senate on Monday passed a bill requiring sharply higher contributions for health benefits and pensions from more than a half-million government workers, while suspending unions’ ability to bargain over health care.

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