Labor, Michigan Republicans — December 6, 2012 at 11:40 am

UPDATED x2: Michigan to become nation’s 24th “Right to Work for Less” state


This is what happens when you vote Republican

In a move that surprises just about nobody, Governor Rick Snyder announced at press conference this morning that when anti-union Republicans send “Right to Work for Less” (RTWFL) legislation to his desk, he will sign it.

After spending the past year being coy about his position on RTWFL, it was widely suspected that he would support such legislation. With gerrymandered districts ensuring Republican dominance for the foreseeable future, the will of Michiganders as a whole is being thwarted by a cadre of drunk-with-power ideologues that have been waiting for decades to jam anti-union, anti-worker, anti-woman and pro-Big Business bills through the legislature and into law. The perfect storm of the 2010 midterm election and the redistricting that happened the following year gave them their opportunity.

From the Detroit News report:

Gov. Rick Snyder said Thursday he wants the Legislature to pass a right-to-work bill and that he would sign the legislation.

Snyder called it a “workplace fairness and equity” bill and said he wants it enacted in the next few days. He said it would cover the public and private sectors with an exception for police and firefighters.

“Workers should have freedom to choose who they associate with,” Snyder said at a packed news conference at his office in the Romney building across from the state Capitol.

Like Scott Walker in Wisconsin, Republicans will carve out an exception for police and fire fighters. They are also including an appropriation that makes it referendum-proof because that’s how they roll. Can’t have the commonfolk having any power over what happens in their own state, after all, not when ideologues are involved.

For anyone, including Governor Snyder, to make the claim that this isn’t, at its heart, an anti-union effort designed to crush the most powerful group under the Democratic tent is beyond disingenuous. It’s a pure lie, simply put.

The IBEW’s tweet spells it out:

Please sign my petition to voice your digust at this egregious attack on working families.

Now we begin the process of overcoming the gerrymandering and electing Democrats anyway in 2014. We have no time to lose.

UPDATE: Nobody is being allowed into the state Capitol Building and there are reports of pepper spray being used. Here’s a video of labor leaders and the press being denied entry (from Abby Clark):

UPDATE: The House has passed their version of Right to Work For Less legislation by vacating another bill and substituting in the RTWFL language. The vote was 58-52. House Dems who walked out were forced to get a court order in order to be let back in the Capitol Building after House Speaker Jase Bolger locked down the building.

The Senate is voting on amendments now and will likely pass it before they adjourn for the evening. Michigan Radio reports that the Senate cannot vote on it for 5 days (I’m not sure why.) However, they are getting ready to vote on a second bill to pass Right to Work for public employee unions.

Meanwhile, the Senate also managed to pass a bill today that forces women to purchase an additional rider on their health insurance if they want abortion services to be covered. ALL health insurance. From Think Progress:

Prevent private insurance companies from covering any abortion services.
A trio of companion bills — SBs 612, 613, and 614 — would work together to ban the health insurance exchange that Michigan will set up under Obamacare from covering abortion, as well as ban private insurers from covering any abortion services under their general insurance plans. Currently, 87 percent of Michigan’s insurance plans include abortion care in their benefits packages. If private insurers elect to cover abortions, they have to do it as a separate rider, which often ends up being more costly for women.

Also, they passed a bill that would allow doctors to refuse care for moral or ethical reasons.

Also, the House Local, Intergovernmental and Regional Affairs committee passed the new Emergency Manager Law out of committee.