Dems in all-out fight for union power in Michigan

Michigan Democrats are alternately threatening and begging Snyder to give up. Democratic Rep. Sander Levin not-very-subtly promised “endless controversy and strife,” and protesters have been gearing up around the state since the GOP first took action last week.

Other Democrats are asking Snyder to veto the bill and set up a referendum on the issue in 2014. But Democrats will probably force some sort of referendum on the new law in 2014 anyway even if Snyder signs it, as expected. Why not put the new measure in place and see how it works for a couple of years?

Democrats are complaining about the speed with which Republicans are acting, but the truth is, organized labor has seen this coming for a while. Stung by the success of Gov. Scott Walker’s efforts to limit collective bargaining in Wisconsin — Walker’s actions have resulted in more money, more teachers and better conditions in schools around the state — they tried to make sure it wouldn’t happen again. In Michigan, they pushed what was known as Proposal 2, which would have enshrined union collective bargaining powers in the state constitution. If Proposal 2 had passed, what state GOP lawmakers are doing now would have been literally unconstitutional.