In an unprecedented move, Democrats in Michigan have made history and achieved a major victory by their parties standard by reinstating a law that was widely unpopular. Gaining control of the local government gave them the power to push this reversal through, reigniting massive frustration in union participation while filling Democrats with hope.
On Friday, Michigan Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer made history with the repeal of her state’s long-standing right-to-work laws. This marks the first time since the 1970s that such laws have been repealed in the States despite massive opposition to the removal of laws.
Daily Wire reports, as a result of the right-to-work measures, residents could choose not to join unions in their workplaces and were not forced to pay dues to unions. Nevertheless, Whitmer and other Democrats celebrated the repeal, which represents a major victory for labor unions.
According to Whitmer, “today, we are coming together to restore workers’ rights, protect Michiganders on the job, and grow Michigan’s middle class. These bills will protect health and safety, ensuring healthcare workers can put patient care ahead of profit, construction workers can speak up when there’s a safety issue, and employees can call attention to food safety threats and other problems. Let’s continue delivering for working people.”
Here is what the local ABC had to say about it.
After the midterm elections, Michigan Democrats took control of the governor’s mansion and both chambers of the legislature, repealing right-to-work laws signed by former Republican Gov. Rick Snyder.
A Mackinac Center for Public Policy analysis found that unions have lost more than 143,000 members since the right-to-work laws took effect in 2012. In the state’s largest unions, membership fees have decreased 26.5%; a particularly severe decline occurred in the Service Employees International Union, which lost nearly 66% of its membership between 2012 and 2022, as well as the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, which lost 49%.
In both the Michigan Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers, membership decreased by 32%.
In November, Whitmer won re-election after receiving at least $2.25 million from the American Federation of Teachers and National Education Association.
Matt Hall, the House Republican Leader, said last week that repealing right-to-work laws will discourage companies from entering the state, thereby causing the job market to worsen.
According to a recent Mackinac Center survey, 58% of voters support right-to-work laws, while 29% oppose them. Among Republicans and right-leaning independents in Michigan, 71% supported the laws, while 46% of Democrats and left-leaning independents supported them.
This has to do with the direction the state of Michigan has long been headed towards after they re-elected one the strictest governors in Whitmer during the lockdowns. Now all workers in the state will be required to re-join these partisan unions with no choice in the matter. Elections certainly have consequences and this one is going to cost Michigan for becoming even more blue.
Let’s continue this conversation, in the comments below.