Inside and outside of Oakland

Michigan right-to-work debate settled? Not by a long shot

  It might be a new year and new legislative session, but Michigan's debate over right-to-work laws continues.

  Michigan became a right-to-work state in December before the close of the two-year legislative session when the Republican-controlled Legislature sent Republican Gov. Rick Snyder legislation to make the change and he signed it amid heated protests outside the state Capitol Building.
  Democrats in the newly seated Legislature, and still the minority party in Lansing, are now upset that Michigan's Pure Michigan ad campaign is touting the state's status as a right-to-work state in an ad in the Wall Street Journal.
  "Apparently, it is not enough for Republicans, against the wishes of thousands of Michigan workers, to endanger collective bargaining and lower wages across the state by passing right-to-work," says state Rep. Tim Greimel, an Auburn Hills Democrat who is the minority party leader in the state House.
  "Now, they feel they must gloat about it by purchasing a full-page ad in a national newspaper," Greimel said. "So much for the governor's talk about reaching across the aisle to achieve common goals."
  For Democrats, right-to-work isn't a settled issue. They've indicated they may pursue a variety of options to undo the new law, including a ballot proposal, legal action and, of course, targeting Republican lawmakers and the governor in the 2014 election.
  If anything, the continued acrimony over right-to-work indicates that the new legislative session will remain as politically polarized as the last. But with Republicans controlling the governor's office, and the House and Senate, there's not much Democrats can do except scream their displeasure.

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