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Big Labor, ‘looking for revenge,’ expects to dump $300 million into 2014 elections

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This is from Wisconsin Reporter@WatchDog.org.

It seems the JabbaThe Hut look a like Richard Trumpka is extorting the union workers.

The money will be funneled in to DemocRat coffers to beat Republicans.

So the unions can force people to pay dues while slowly bankrupting the company.

 

Big Labor pledges it will go all in, again, in its drive to knock out its top political adversaries in 2014.

And one of the biggest targets is Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker, hero to conservatives, bane of the left for his public-sector collective bargaining reforms.

AP photo

MAD MONEY: AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka wants to make the minimum wage the No. 1 issue this election year. His Big Labor pals are willing to spend heavily to go after five Republican governors, including Wisconsin’s Scott Walker, who have cost unions some of their power base over the past few years.

Michael Podhorzer, political director of the AFL-CIO, in a New York Times piece last week said the nation’s labor unions look to spend at least $300 million going after Republicans in this fall’s elections.

Much of that spending is expected to be dropped on four industrial battlegrounds — MichiganOhioPennsylvania andWisconsin, traditional union strongholds. Big Labor also wantsFlorida.

“Their hope is to not only oust the Republican governors of those states, but also to flip several of the legislative chambers. In all five states the Republicans control both houses,” the Times piece notes.

Organized labor spent about $300 million in 2010 targeting elections. This time around, the unions intend to hammer a theme they see as the winner this election year: Boosting the minimum wage.

“Raising wages for all workers is the issue of our time and, hopefully, will be the issue of this election,” AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said during the annual meeting last week in Houston.

As the Times piece points out, Big Labor is looking for payback, ramping up to hit governors like Walker, whose Act 10 handed public employee unions one of their biggest losses, and Michigan Republican Gov. Rick Snyder for delivering a right-to-work law that ends forced union dues in the home of the United Auto Workers.

“It’s about survival,” Lee Saunders, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and chairman of the AFL-CIO’s political committee, told the newspaper.  “What’s happened didn’t just hurt public-sector unions, it hurt the entire labor movement,” Saunders said of Walker’s law that rolled back the power of public-sector unions in Wisconsin.

Conservatives are biting back.

“(Last week), the AFL-CIO announced that they are planning to spend at least $300 million this year to unseat five GOP governors. $300 MILLION! And guess who is on that list?” Walker campaign manager Stephan Thompson wrote in a fundraising appeal.

“While Governor Walker has been focused on moving Wisconsin forward and turning a $3.6 billion deficit into nearly a $1 billion surplus, the big-government unions have been focused on taking the state back to the days where they reigned supreme — the days where taxes and unemployment were skyrocketing,” adds the campaign email, asking would-be donors to “contribute $10, $20, or $30 to help Governor Walker combat these liberal special interests who are only just beginning their nasty campaign to take back Wisconsin.”

Big Labor and other liberal outside special interest groups dumped nearly $36 million into Wisconsin’s spate of recall campaigns in 2012, according to an analysis by the liberal-leaning Wisconsin Democracy Campaign. The figure includes the recall election Walker won, handily beating Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, a Democrat.

But Walker and his supporters proved up to the challenge, with conservative groups spending $22.6 million on the governor’s recall race, compared to $14 million by groups supporting the Democrat candidates, according to WDC.

Walker and Republican groups and committees outspent all of the Democratic candidates, groups and committees $58.7 million to $21.9 million in the nearly $81 million governor’s race, the review concludes.

Walker’s re-election campaign raised $5.1 million during the last six months of 2013, moving into the year with $4.6 million cash on hand.

His Democrat challenger, Mary Burke, a former Trek Bicycle executive and a member of the Madison Metropolitan School Board, raised $1.4 million between October, when she jumped into the race, and the end of the year. Burke, a millionaire who served as state Commerce secretary under former Democrat Gov. Jim Doyle, unloaded another $400,000 of her own money into the campaign during the period.

Those fundraising numbers are just the tip of the iceberg in the big money chase to come, campaign watchers say.

The Republican Governors Association last week launched a six-figure ad buy going after Burke, reminding voters that she worked for a governor who presided over one of Wisconsin’s most significant periods of job loss.

“Waste, mismanagement – Mary Burke would take Wisconsin backwards,” concludes the first ad, which rolled out on Wednesday.

Burke’s campaign countered with a statement, in part saying, “Scott Walker’s Governors Association is clearly panicked at the realization they’re running against a proven job creator.”

Walker, a much-talked-about potential GOP candidate for president in 2016, carries a big national target on his back in his bid for re-election this year.

John McAdams, a political science professor at Marquette University in Milwaukee, said Walker in many ways is the ideal conservative for the right, particularly his image as an economic conservative. For the left, there is a “symbolic” importance in beating the Republican governor.

Organized labor “has a very long-term interest as the implementation of Walker’s Act 10 is seen as a political failure for them, and their recall effort failed,” McAdams said.

“If Walker is not re-elected they can say they won the war, even if they lost about four big battles along the way,” he said.

But it’s still early, McAdams said. While Big Labor may be putting a big target on Walker’s back, should Burke lose ground in the polls and become a less attractive political investment, the labor movement will move on and spend its money elsewhere, McAdams said.

“Let’s just say the political types, the people out soliciting campaign contributions are watching the development of campaigns almost in minute detail,” the pundit said.

In the most recent Marquette Law School Poll, Walker expanded his lead to 6 percentage points. The bigger issue for Burke? A vast majority of registered voters who responded to the poll had no idea who she was.

Nationally, groups like American Bridge, tied to Hillary Clinton and backed by big-money liberal donor George Soros, are spending a lot of cash and manpower trying to pin the politically charged John Doe investigations on Walker. The first such secret probe ended in March 2013, after nearly three years, without any charges of wrongdoing against the governor.

A second investigation was launched by the same Democrat-led Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office in August 2012. The presiding judge has quashed several subpoenas, ruling prosecutors did not show compelling evidence that conservative groups illegally coordinated with campaigns during the 2012 recall elections.

Big Labor has pledged payback for the big policy losses they’ve suffered, conservative-led reforms that are costing unions members, money and power. Labor union membership remained flat in 2013, at 11.3 percent of the working population, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. But the numbers have plummeted during the past 30 years, from 17.7 million union workers in 1983, or 20.1 percent, to 14.5 million last year.

Big Labor’s hope lies in big victories at the polls — and that drive won’t come cheap.

“It’s revenge time for AFL-CIO officials, who have publicly declared war on (Michigan Gov.) Rick Snyder and (five) other Republican governors in the 2014 elections,” declared an August 2013 post by the National Institute for Labor Relations Research, an organization committed to exposing the “inequities of compulsory unionism,” according to its website.

“Snyder, who signed a Right to Work bill in 2012, is sure to be the most important target for AFL-CIO union officials who have million(s) of forced-dues dollars to spend on the 2014 elections,” ILRR stated.

Contact M.D. Kittle at mkittle@watchdog.org

Please, feel free to “steal our stuff”! Just remember to credit Watchdog.org. Find out more

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Snyder shoulders Detroit bankruptcy decision, won’t ask for federal help

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This is from Fox News Politics.

Why should the taxpayers be on the hook to bail out Detroit?

There is plenty of blames for the DemocRats,the city and

public sector unions.

Their greed and stupidity caused Detroit’s problems.

 

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and the bankruptcy specialist he appointed to fix Detroit’s unprecedented financial problems put the blame Sunday squarely on the city and defended their decision to file for Chapter 9.

The Republican governor said Detroit created the problems and stood steadfast behind his decision to file Thursday for bankruptcy, with the city roughly $19 billion in debt.

“This is a tragic, difficult decision, but a right one,” he said. “It’s not about just more money, it’s about accountable government.”

He said corruption and city leaders ignoring warning signs for 60 years contributed to the problems. Among his biggest concerns, Snyder said, is the decline of municipal services for Detroit’s remaining 700,000 residents, including police response times of nearly one hour.

Snyder said the state cannot help and asking for a federal bailout is “not the right answer,” though Washington has that option.

The Obama administration has extended no offer to help, after Congress and the White House agreed to bail out Chrysler and General Motors during the recent recession.

“Can we help Detroit? We don’t know,” Vice President Joe Biden said last week. His remarks followed White House Press Secretary Jay Carney appearing to rule out such assistance.

“That’s something that local leaders and creditors are going to have to resolve,” he said. “But we will be partners in an effort to assist the city and the state as they move forward.”

Among the emerging concerns is that the federal government would have to help repeatedly, considering Chicago reportedly has an unfunded pension liability of at least $19 billion while Los Angeles’ is estimate to be as much as $30 billion.

“There are a lot of other cities right behind Detroit,” Republican strategist Ron Bonjean told Fox News on Sunday.

Kevyn Orr, the emergency manager and bankruptcy lawyer appointed by Snyder, made comments similar to the governor’s on Sunday but avoided questions about a possible government bailout.

“This is the only way,” he told “Fox News Sunday.” “We were compelled to file for bankruptcy.”

Orr said his goal is to restructure the debt, including roughly $3.5 million in underfunded pension liabilities, and to get Detroit on its feet again by fall 2014.

He also said he has appealed a judge’s ruling Friday that the bankruptcy violates Michigan’s constitution, which protects government employees’ pensions.

Orr also said that his plan would extend full payments only to pensioners for the next six months and acknowledge the hardship it will cause.

“This is very personal to me,” he said. “My mother is a pensioner.”

Still, he said Detroit “dug this hole,” in part by not addressing its problems earlier.

With a population of 1.8 million in the 1950s, Detroit’s slow decline started with residents migrating to the suburbs in the 1960s and was accelerated by automakers leaving Detroit, which diminished the city’s tax base and made it difficult for officials to provide basic services such as police protection.

The filing makes the city the largest in the United States to file for bankruptcy.

Orr also defended criticism from the financial sector, saying potential investors will look at an improved Detroit, not the old one.

I remember when people said “nobody will ever buy a car from a bankrupt automaker,” Orr said.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/07/21/detroit-emergency-manager-defends-bankruptcy-says-city-dug-this-hole/#ixzz2ZjdMJQmu

 

Michigan locals raise funds for ‘hotdog guy’ after union protesters destroy his supplies

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This is from Fox News Politics.

A classic example of union thuggery.

I read in a different article the chanted Ni–er while trashing this mans cart.

If they were from the Tea Party it would be the lead story.

Clint Tarver2_hotdogMI.jpg

 

Clinton Tarver has been serving hot dogs to hungry locals in downtown Lansing, Mich., for the last five years, but a brush this week with a pro-union protest literally upended his small business in a matter of minutes.

During a protest against right-to-work legislation in Michigan‘s capital, Tarver’s catering supplies were destroyed when demonstrators tore down the tent where he was serving and trampled his gear.

The tent had been set up by the conservative Americans for Prosperity, which supports the legislation Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law Tuesday that allows unionized workers to opt out of paying union dues.

Tarver, who has been a small business owner for the last 16 years, was there to give hot dogs to supporters in the tent on the Capitol lawn. He said he was just checking tickets, not sizing up customers.

“Everyone that had a ticket I had given a hot dog to,” the 63-year-old owner of Clint’s Hot Dog Cart and Casual Catering told FoxNews.com. “So when two guys, one with a mask, came to get their hot dogs, I didn’t think anything of it because they had tickets and I was just there for a job.”

He described the action that ensued as “violent.” Only minutes after he’d handed the two men their hot dogs, the pair tore down the tent, turned over his serving tables, smashed his hot dogs, tossed a cooler filled with sodas and spilled his chili.

“I kept explaining that I was just here to do a job, that I wasn’t on anybody’s side, but when people started calling me racial slurs, my friend who works at the Capitol told me I had to get out of there, so I crawled out,” said Tarver, who is black.

Until Tuesday, he thought he was relatively unknown. But word spread about the incident, and local residents on both sides of the issue began rallying to help Tarver out.

Lorilea Zabadal, a staff member for Republican state Rep. Al Pscholka, set up an online fundraiser at gofundme.com/SupportClint. The goal was to reach $5,000. As of Wednesday afternoon, over $14,000 in donations had been raised.

“I supported Clint. He’s a great guy and a great small business,” Lt. Governor Brian Calley said on Twitter. He also thanked citizens who had supported Tarver financially.

Tarver said that state Sen. Joe Humes and his wife reached out to Tarver on Tuesday night promising to reimburse him for his equipment.

And a spokesperson for Americans for Prosperity said they plan to reimburse Tarver as well.

Michigan State Police have contacted Tarver about the incident, but a request for comment by Lansing police was not immediately returned to FoxNews.com.

Tarver said he’s overwhelmed by the support and that he didn’t know he had touched so many people.

“I never knew people cared so much about the hot dog guy — I feel overwhelmed,” Tarver said. “I’m just here to serve.”

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/12/12/lansing-locals-raise-funds-for-hot-dog-guy-after-protesters-destroy-his-supplies/#ixzz2EtVCS14k

 

Michigan Republicans draw union ire with sudden votes on right-to-work legislation

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This is from Fox News Politics.

I applaud the Michigan Legislature for standing up for workers.

The union goons have been sucking the life blood from Michigan.

I hope this right to work legislation becomes law.

How many of the unions goons were from Michigan?

Unions have a tendency to bus in there rent a mob goons.

 

Michigan Republicans touched off a firestorm Thursday with an abrupt push to pass right-to-work legislation, in what would be a blow to organized labor in the home of the U.S. auto industry.

Right-to-work legislation prohibits unions from forcing workers to pay union dues. Unions and their Democratic allies adamantly oppose these laws — but with little warning, Michigan Republicans on Thursday laid the groundwork to, in a matter of days, make their state the 24th with right-to-work legislation.

“This is all about taking care of the hard-working workers in Michigan, being pro-worker and giving them freedom to make choices,” Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder said. “The goal isn’t to divide Michigan, it is to bring Michigan together.”

The votes Thursday, though, drew hundreds of union-tied protesters to the capital, some of whom were pepper-sprayed by police when they tried to storm the Senate chamber.

Just hours after the bills were introduced, both Republican-controlled chambers approved measures prohibiting private unions from requiring dues. The Senate quickly followed by voting to impose the same requirement on most public unions.

Because of rules requiring a five-day delay between votes in the two chambers on the same legislation, final enactment could not take place until Tuesday at the earliest. Snyder, who previously had said repeatedly that right-to-work was “not on my agenda,” told reporters Thursday he would sign the measures.

Democrats denounced the bills as an attack on worker rights, but the GOP sponsor insisted they would boost the economy and jobs. A House vote on public-sector unions was expected to come later.

A victory in Michigan would give the right-to-work movement its strongest foothold yet in the Rust Belt region, where organized labor already has suffered several body blows. Republicans in Indiana and Wisconsin recently pushed through legislation curbing union rights, sparking massive protests.

Even before the Michigan bills turned up, protesters streamed inside the Capitol preparing for what appeared inevitable after Snyder, House Speaker Jase Bolger and Senate Minority Leader Randy Richardville announced at a news conference they were putting the issue on a fast track.

Lt. Gov. Brian Calley repeatedly gaveled for order during the Senate debate as Democrats attacked the legislation to applause from protesters in the galley.

Eight people were arrested for resisting and obstructing when they tried to push past two troopers guarding the Senate door, state police Inspector Gene Adamczyk said.

Protesters waved placards and chanted slogans such as “Union buster” and “Right-to-work has got to go.” Adamczyk said the troopers used pepper spray after the people refused to obey orders to stop.

The Capitol, which was temporarily closed because of safety concerns, reopened Thursday afternoon, sending hundreds of protesters streaming back inside.

The decision to push forward in the waning days of the Legislature’s lame-duck session infuriated outnumbered Democrats, who resorted to parliamentary maneuvers to slow action but were powerless to block the bills.

House Democrats did walk out briefly Thursday in protest of the Capitol being closed.

Through a spokesman, President Obama also reiterated his opposition to right-to-work laws.

White House spokesman Matt Lehrich said Obama believes the economy “is stronger when workers get good wages and good benefits, and he opposes attempts to roll back their rights.”

Lehrich said Michigan workers’ role in helping reviving the U.S. auto industry shows “how unions have helped build a strong middle class and a strong American economy.”

Adamczyk estimated that about 2,500 visitors were inside the Capitol, where their shouts reverberated off stone halls and frequently could be heard inside the ornate chambers.

After repeatedly insisting during his first two years in office that right-to-work was not on his agenda, Snyder reversed course Thursday, a month after voters defeated a ballot initiative that would have barred such measures under the state constitution.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Snyder said he had kept the issue at arm’s length while pursuing other programs to bolster the state economy. But he said circumstances had pushed the matter to the forefront.

“It is a divisive issue,” he acknowledged. “But it was already being divisive over the past few weeks, so let’s get this resolved. Let’s reach a conclusion that’s in the best interests of all.”

Also influencing his decision, he said, were reports that some 90 companies had decided to locate in Indiana since that state adopted right-to-work legislation. “That’s thousands of jobs, and we want to have that kind of success in Michigan,” he said.

Snyder and the GOP leaders insisted the legislation was not meant to weaken unions or collective bargaining, saying it would make unions more responsive to their members.

Senate Democratic leader Gretchen Whitmer said she was “livid.”

Republicans have commanding majorities in both chambers — 64-46 in the House and 26-12 in the Senate. Under their rules, only a simple majority of members elected and serving must be present to have a quorum and conduct business. For that reason, Democrats acknowledged that boycotting sessions and going into hiding, as some lawmakers in neighboring Indiana and Wisconsin have done in recent years to stall legislation unpopular with unions, would be futile in Michigan.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/12/07/michigan-republicans-push-right-to-work-bill-amid-protests-from-union/#ixzz2ERzJz5T5 

 

Michigan Republicans consider “right-to-work” legislation

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This is from Yahoo News.

More states need right to work laws.

So the Mafia Union Bosses can not sake people down for dues money.

Money that the Mafia Union Bosses give to DemocRats.

(Reuters) – Michigan‘s Republican-led legislature is considering a push for a “right-to-work” law that would make paying union dues optional in a state that has one of the highest union membership rates in the United States and is home to the United Auto Workers.

Republican Governor Rick Snyder, who had said in the past that a “right-to-work” law was not appropriate for Michigan, said on Tuesday the issue was now under discussion, though he did not say if or when a proposal would be introduced.

“We want to have a thoughtful discussion so there will be ongoing dialogues, say, tomorrow and the next day and we will make a conclusion when appropriate,” Snyder told reporters after meeting on Tuesday with Republican state House and Senate leaders.

No action was taken on a proposal on Wednesday.

Michigan would be the second state in the nation’s industrial heartland to adopt such a law after Indiana this year became the 23rd state with such laws.

“Right-to-work” laws typically allow workers to opt out of paying union dues, forbidding requirements that a person must join a union to work in a certain shop.

Supporters say the laws help attract or retain businesses, while opponents say they suppress wages and benefits for workers, and undermine the financial stability of unions.

Republicans control Michigan’s legislature and governor’s office. Voters in November rejected a measure to enshrine a right to collective bargaining in the state constitution, leading to renewed calls to take up the right-to-work issue.

The Michigan Chamber of Commerce on Monday backed passage of right-to-work legislation, citing in part a survey that found 85 percent support among its members.

When asked whether he thought right-to-work laws were right for the state now, Snyder said on Tuesday, “I am not going to make a conclusion on that. We are having thoughtful discussions.”

Michigan House Speaker Jase Bolger and other Republican leaders have sought to generate support to pass a right-to-work law during the December lame-duck legislative session.

“Discussions about Freedom to Work legislation are continuing and there is no final agreement or decision on whether to move forward or what that would look like if we do,” Ari Adler, Bolger’s spokesman, said in a statement on Wednesday.

The Metropolitan Affairs Coalition, which includes both business and labor interests, last week urged Michigan not to pursue right-to-work laws.

“We continue to be hopeful that RTW be for discussion … not legislation,” coalition president Paul Tait said in a statement on Wednesday. “This is clearly divisive and counterproductive.”

Tait said Michigan’s economy is turning around, in part, because of good labor-management relations.

“Anything, including RTW, that would derail that progress makes no sense,” Tait said.

About 17.5 percent of Michigan workers were members of unions last year, placing it fifth among states, compared with 11.8 percent of workers nationally, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The potential action in Michigan follows efforts that greatly curbed the bargaining powers of public sector unions in Wisconsin in 2011. Ohio residents turned back efforts to curb public sector union powers in 2011 through a referendum vote.

Michigan Union Presses Panic Button Over Right to Work Rumors

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This is from Town Hall.

 

It is time to break the unions strangle hold on America’s businesses.

At one time unions served a purpose.

Now they just shake down their members and destroy businesses.

Michigan Union Presses Panic Button Over Right to Work Rumors

 

The Michigan Education Association always portrays itself as the poor, pitiful victim.

 

It was the victim when the legislature passed relatively mild education reforms. It was the victim when its ballot proposal to enshrine collective bargaining in the state constitution was soundly defeated by voters Nov. 6.

 

Now the union is wringing its hands over a rumored Right to Work proposal that may be introduced and debated in the state legislature during the lame duck session.

 

On Tuesday, the union pressed the panic button and issued a screed to its members via email:

 

“With just a few weeks left in the Legislative session, right-wing politicians in Lansing are looking to exact political revenge against union members by ramming through dangerous bills that will harm school employees, middle-class families and children throughout Michigan.

 

“Their reckless agenda includes:

 

• Undermining workers’ rights by passing so-called “right-to-work” legislation 

• Instituting voucher-style “reform” of our public schools 

• Cutting taxes even further for corporate special interests 

“These extremist legislators must be stopped immediately. The Working Michigan coalition is holding events across our state tonight and tomorrow night to help mobilize union members and supporters in the effort to fight back.”

 

It’s hard to feel sorry for this group of tin-horned gangsters. They were in a good position and they got too greedy.

 

Gov. Rick Snyder has been criticized for not being tough enough on public sector unions like the MEA. He went out of his way during the union-led kerfuffle in Wisconsin to say he did not want the same type of showdown in Michigan. He, without provocation, essentially called any meaningful labor reform dead on arrival.

 

But the unions’ attempted power grab – Proposal 2 – apparently changed all that.

 

The unions broke the apparent truce with a proposed constitutional amendment that would have repealed all of Snyder’s education reforms and allowed collective bargaining agreements to trump state law. MEA officials (and their allies) stood before cameras, thumped their chests and declared they would spend $25 million to pass the amendment.

 

They failed, and now the Right to Work folks are out in force, hoping to capitalize on the union defeat.

 

So now the unions are attempting to marshal their forces in an effort to protect their last bastions of power: compulsory union membership and automatically deducted dues. A Right to Work law would eliminate those union lifelines.

 

If it is indeed introduced, Right to Work legislation it would likely come to a vote. The antics of Democrats legislators in Wisconsin, who fled the state in 2011 to prevent a vote on anti-union legislation, could not be replicated. Michigan law gives power to the Speaker of the House to order the state police to round up legislators, even across international lines.

 

We have to wonder if the MEA regrets breaking the truce with the Snyder administration and pushing for passage of Proposal 2. They’ve talked their way into a dangerous corner and they’re not sure how they’re going to manage to escape.

 

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