Michigan May Be Next Battleground for Anti-Union Forces
As Wisconsin voters prepare to head to the polls next week for the recall election of GOP Gov. Scott Walker, anti-labor forces are already eyeing where they will take their union-busting battle to next. It appears that Michigan, where unions wield much power and influence, will be the likely destination.
In that state, Republican Gov. Rick Snyder has already signed a law that essentially gives him the power to bust unions. According to Forbes, the law is so extensive in reach that it “can literally push aside duly elected city officials and prevent them from doing the job they were elected to do.”
Liberals are hoping to challenge Snyder and his anti-labor law at the ballot box this November. –TEB
Opponents gathered more than 203,000 signatures — about 40,000 more than necessary — for a ballot measure to repeal the law, but the State Board of Canvassers ruled the petition invalid because it may have been printed in an incorrect font size. The Michigan Court of Appeals is expected to rule any day on whether voters will get to vote on repeal November.
“This is more extreme than anything in Wisconsin,” said Edward McNeil, assistant to the president of AFSCME Council 25, which led bargaining for the Detroit area’s public employee unions.
Conservatives and anti-labor forces nationally view Michigan as a laboratory for policy that could spread to states facing similar financial challenges. Already, lawmakers in Indiana, Rhode Island and Pennsylvania are mulling similar solutions.