LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — The Democratically controlled Michigan legislature is being pushed by both sides on whether or not to repeal the state’s right-to-work law.
Segments of organized labor began their lobbying effort to scrap the Michigan right-to-work law on Inauguration Day.
A billboard was driven around the Capitol during Whitmer’s inauguration, urging lawmakers to make it their top priority.
Labor is still smarting from ten years ago when Republicans passed the law giving workers a choice on joining a union. Since then, labor union membership has dipped between 2-3%.
The Operating Engineers Union is urging the Democrats to take up the repeal on day one.
The new House Republican leader Matt Hall has warned the Democrats that jumping right into a contentious debate over right-to-work could damage the bi-partisan relations that Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says she wants to cultivate in this new year.
And it appears that new Senate Democratic leader Winnie Brinks and the new House Speaker Joe Tate are taking their time on the issue instead of pushing hard right now.
Whitmer got strong support from labor unions in her 11-point victory, and is fully aware of the desire to repeal right away. But in a post election conversation, Whitmer said it’s not the top item on her agenda.
“I’m not going to lead with that,” Whitmer said.
The governor wants the repeal, but timing is everything in politics, and she feels waiting is better.
While labor wants a repeal, 50% of the general public is neutral, 29% want it off the books, and 22% favor the status quo.
At this read, it appears segments of labor will need more than a sign to get quick action on Right to Work.