LANSING (WWJ) – A coalition of groups led by the United Auto Workers union is launching a petition drive this week to keep Michigan from following the lead of Indiana and becoming a “right-to-work” state.
WWJ Lansing Bureau Chief Tim Skubick says banning right-to-work will not be easy.
“We have right to work supporters who say the polling data suggests right now that the vast majority of Republicans favor right-to-work. Even one-third of the union households favor it,” Skubick said. “So, it could be a battle if the unions get their act together and get the names and place this on the November ballot for you to decide.”
UAW President Bob King announced last week that unions will push for an amendment to the Michigan Constitution that bars so-called “right-to-work” legislation outlawing contracts that require employees to join unions. Republicans who control the state Legislature have been pushing for a law that would ban labor agreements with mandatory union dues.
King said they will seek 500,000 signatures, about twice what the law requires to place a constitutional amendment on the state ballot before the July deadline.
Skubick says even though Governor Rick Snyder claims right-to-work is not on his agenda, the unions say a ballot initiative would ensure Michigan would remain a labor stronghold.
If the proposal makes it on the ballot in November, the issue could also drive Democrats to the polls, which would help a lot of pro-labor candidates.