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Union Battles Spread to Michigan

The battles over unions in Wisconsin may be over for now, but the national fight is still just beginning. In the past two years, governments in San Diego and Indiana have joined Wisconsin to introduce measures to curb the power of public-sector unions, and even blue stalwarts like New York are beginning to take a harder line on union benefits.

Naturally, unions are gearing up for the fight of their lives, readying a national campaign to roll back anti-union reforms. They are making progress in Michigan, where the state’s Supreme Court has just ruled that an initiative to write collective-bargaining rights into the constitution must be included on the ballot in November. The Wall Street Journal has more:

Pro-labor-union groups celebrated their victory on the collective-bargaining initiative, while the Michigan Chamber of Commerce expressed sharp disappointment, saying the majority of justices “failed to uphold clear standards for proposed amendments to the state constitution.” The governor and the state’s attorney general, also a Republican, had tried to block the measure last month, arguing that the impact of the proposed change wouldn’t be clear enough to voters.

This looks like a minor victory for the unions, but we’ll see what the voters have to say in November. One thing, however, is clear: This is one of the defining political battles of the era. Expect to see it heat up over the next few years.

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