Shikha Dalmia on Why Michigan May Become a Right-to-Work State


Unions went for broke in Michigan and they lost big time, writes Shikha Dalmia. But the question now is whether this defeat will open the right-to-work floodgates?

Michigan voters soundly defeated Prop 2—a.k.a. the Protect Our Jobs initiative—a constitutional amendment that would have given public-sector unions a potent tool to challenge any law—past, present, or future—limiting their benefits and powers. It would also have permanently barred Michigan from becoming a right-to-work state where payment of dues is no longer required as a condition of employment in unionized companies. In the wake of the election, Dalmia reports, conservative lawmakers are interpreting the resounding defeat for the ballot proposition as essentially a mandate for a right-to-work law in the state and are calling for one before the end of the year—not an impossible feat since they managed to hang on to their control of the legislature and the Supreme Court.