Thanks to the efforts of Governor Rick Snyder (R) and following the lead of their neighbor Wisconsin, led by Governor Scott Walker (R), there are fewer unionized workers in Michigan than ever, and the number is consistently falling.
LANSING – A bigger share of Lansing’s workers belong to unions than in all of Michigan, but their ranks may be shrinking.
New estimates from two university economists show that metropolitan Lansing’s workforce was more unionized in 2014 than the state workforce as a whole — 18.9 percent, versus the statewide 14.5 percent reported last month by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Michigan, home of Government Motors, is a Right to Work state, thanks to the leadership shown by Rick Snyder. Michigan’s economy is growing again after decades of decline under union worshiping Democrats in Lansing, and the reason is Right to Work.
Statewide, “you lost a good amount of union members, but you also lost jobs within the sectors that are unionizable, so to speak,” said John Beck, an associate professor of human resources and labor relations at MSU.
“What that really means is that it’s not only right to work, it’s (also) continued rises in productivity through new technologies, it’s continuing subcontracting of work away from primary workforces to secondary workforces that cannot necessarily be unionized.”
The reason they can’t be unionized? Unions don’t offer workers anything but excessive dues that pay for 1%er lifestyles of their leadership and pay the election costs of Democrats. The number one priority for Republicans in every state should be Right to Work and especially for public employees, Public employee unions are nothing more than a scam to move taxpayer’s money into the hands of Democrats.
There’s more good news in the region as well. In neighboring Illinois their new Republican Governor, Bruce Rauner, has his sights set on unions as well. His task is a little more daunting since Democrats hold veto proof majorities in both houses of the legislature but he’s making some inroads anyway.
In his state-of-the-state speech last week, the newly elected Republican governor of Illinois, Bruce Rauner, called on his state’s local governments to pass right-to-work ordinances to improve their economic competitiveness — aware, presumably, that there is no way the deep-blue Illinois legislature is going to approve such a law across the state.
But he’s got more tricks up his sleeve to improve the state’s dire economic and budget picture, including a daring one he uncorked yesterday: He issued an executive order declaring, based on the logic of a 2014 Supreme Court case, that state employees who don’t want to join a union don’t have to pay anything to the union that represents them.
The move, preventing the state from compelling the payment of so-called “fair-share fees,” could help marginalize the unions that have put the state in such dire budgetary straits — and weaken public unions in a number of other deep-blue states, too.
About 6,500 Illinois state workers currently pay such a fee, also known as an agency fee, which is generally close to or the same as actual union dues. It allows one to register opposition to the union while still holding a union job, but you can’t vote in elections, etc.; in the relevant unions, if you do that, you’re still obligated to pay anywhere from 79 percent to 100 percent of full union dues.
Once you get out of Chicago, most of Illinois is a fairly conservative, or at least Republican, state. There’s every expectation that down-state cities and towns should be able to pass Right to Work legislation for their towns and there’s nothing the legislature can do about it.
Also, by eliminating “fair share” fees, state workers will be able to opt out of their mandatory donations to the Democratic Party under the guise of union dues. That move has cost in unions in Wisconsin anywhere from half to 90% of their membership.
Allowing workers to opt out of unions puts more money on the table for working families, takes food off the table of union fat cats who should be dieting anyway, and has the effect of eliminating a major source of funds for Democrats, leveling the playing field come election time.
This is good news for Republicans. Even better, it’s good news for working families.
Sign up to get alerts from Joe!