Is Right-To-Work Win in Mich. a Union Chief’s Fault?

-by Warner Todd Huston

One of the big reasons that the right-to-work advocates in Michigan pushed so hard and so quickly for the new worker’s rights legislation this month is because of the failure of two constitutional changes that unions pushed so heavily to get passed in last November’s election.

Proposal 2 and 4 were both pushed hard by all of Michigan’s unions yet both lost pretty convincingly on Election day. When these two measures got trounced, the worker’s freedom advocates saw an opening and this month went for it like a bass after a minnow!

So, what dos this all have to do with the union chief I hint at in the headline?

As it happens, the President of the United Auto Workers, Bob King, was a zealot for Prop 2. He also supported Prop 4, of course, but it was Prop 2 that he really pushed for hard. It was 2 that he helped raise millions of dollars to get passed. It was also 2 that led to the “honking off Gov. Rick Snyder.”

As Detroit News writer Henry Payne properly notes, Republican Governor Synder had spent most of his time in office holding right-to-work advocates at arms length. Even when all this was said and done and the worker’s rights legislation was headed to his desk, he reminded the state that he never campaigned on pushing right-to-work policies.

But Union chief King insisted on pushing Prop 2, a measure that would have destroyed every budget reform that Snyder was trying to implement as well as prevent Snyder or any future governor from ever having any ability to affect the state’s budget on into the future.

Prop 2 would essentially have given the unions the first and last say on how the state’s budget would be drawn up and Snyder had had enough of Bob King’s power grab. It was especially galling since King is not an elected official and his power cannot be curbed by voters.

So, when Props 2 and 4 went down in flames and right-to-work advocates were able to so quickly engineer their legislation and get it passed, Snyder was only too happy to stick a finger in King’s eye by signing the bill.

Payne also points out that if Snyder wins re-election in 2014, that will seal the fate of union thuggery throughout the state.

Let’s hope Payne’s prediction of a second Snyder term comes to fruition.