Posts tagged Mackinac Center for Public Policy

    Whitmer would violate her own directive by signing right-to-work repeal

    March 23, 2023 // An appropriation attached to the bill gives it immunity to a voter referendum, something Whitmer once opposed Whitmer publicly opposes the practice of referendum-proofing legislation in this way, and she issued an executive directive prohibiting the practice in 2019. “I intend to veto legislation that circumvents the right to a referendum,” Whitmer wrote in Executive Directive 2019-07.

    In Michigan, a Modicum of Justice for a COVID-Exploiting Teachers’ Union

    March 21, 2023 // According to a January 2022 Freedom Foundation report, labor unions and related organizations procured some 223 loans totaling $36.1 million during the period between the passage of the CARES Act in March 2020, which created the PPP program, and the American Rescue Plan in March 2021, which modified it. Leading recipients included teachers’ unions, government employees’ unions, and AFL-CIO advocacy groups. As the Freedom Foundation asserted in its report: The ineligible loans diverted resources away from the purpose of the PPP, namely helping businesses keep employees on payroll. Further, given that union revenue derives primarily from dues deducted from members’ paychecks, direct support to unions was unnecessary; to the extent the PPP loans to businesses allowed union employees to keep working, it also allowed unions to continue collecting dues from their paychecks.

    The Michigan Education Association Improperly Took COVID-19 Relief Funds

    March 6, 2023 // “The Michigan Education Association applied for money intended for struggling businesses during the height of the pandemic,” said Joseph G. Lehman, president of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. “The union and MESSA obtained some of the largest PPP loans in the country. They took these funds, for which they were clearly ineligible, while shuttered restaurants, stores, other businesses and their workers struggled to stay afloat.” Private businesses and some nonprofits were eligible for the loans, but 501(c)(5) and 501(c)(9) organizations, like the MEA and MESSA, were clearly prohibited from receiving PPP funds. The Mackinac Center was eligible as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, but did not apply for assistance. In April 2020, the MEA and MESSA both applied for PPP funding. The MEA received $6.4 million while MESSA received a $6.1 million loan. Officials of both organizations certified that they had read the eligibility requirements of the program and asserted they were eligible for the loans. Money from the program ran out within weeks. While the union and MESSA eventually returned the improper funds in December 2020, taking them in the first place denied eligible businesses from receiving them.


    February 7, 2023 // Rep. Andrew Fink, R-Hillsdale, pointed to a 2022 study from the Mackinac Center, a right-leaning Michigan think tank. The study found that counties in “right-to-work” states had higher employment levels compared to bordering counties in non-“right-to-work” states. “Because of our unusual peninsular geography, relatively few communities in Michigan border another right-to-work state, leaving us to bear the brunt of such a policy change,” Fink said.

    Michigan could become first state in nearly 60 years to ditch ‘right-to-work’ law

    January 13, 2023 // Michigan was not the first state to enact right-to-work. But it is a state steeped in labor history now poised to become the first state in nearly 60 years to ditch such a law, with Democrats controlling the executive and legislative branches of state government for the first time in four decades.

    Michigan Democrats to tackle Right-to-Work. Unions are a top donor

    December 19, 2022 // Bridge Michigan analysis shows unions were among the top donors to Democrats, but especially Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and incoming legislative leaders Sen. Winnie Brinks of Grand Rapids and Rep. Joe Tate of Detroit. Combined, unions gave $577,500 to the three as of Nov. 28, comprising 31 percent of the $1.9 million the trio collected in group donations, according to a Bridge Michigan analysis. Five big unions alone — the United Auto Workers, Michigan Region of Carpenters, the AFL-CIO, AFSCME and SEIU — made a total of $3 million in political contributions across Michigan during the election, all but $51,000 of which went to Democrats, the analysis shows.

    New Poll Shows Strong Support for Michigan’s ‘Right-to-Work’ Law as 10th Anniversary Approaches

    December 12, 2022 // An overwhelming majority of Michigan residents approve of the state’s right-to-work law in a new poll commissioned by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Next week will mark the 10-year anniversary of the law’s passage. Right-to-work has strong support across Republicans, Democrats, Independents, men, and women. The support held for every age group and in every region of Michigan. Union household supported the law by a nearly 2-to-1 margin (55% to 28%).

    Right-to-Work battle looms in Michigan: Businesses fear repeal by Democrats

    December 5, 2022 // Michigan business groups are wary of Democrats’ calls to repeal Right-to-Work laws when they take charge in Lansing early next year, saying the state instead should focus on economic policies that attract jobs. Business Leaders for Michigan, the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and chamber leaders from the state’s two largest cities — Detroit and Grand Rapids — all urge caution. But Democrats — who are backed heavily by unions including the Michigan Education Association and United Auto Workers — say the move prioritizes workers and labor rights.

    Construction trade association sues state over Whitmer’s ‘unilateral’ prevailing wage policy

    July 22, 2022 // "The governor has seemingly revived this repealed procedure, but has not done so by either enforcing legislation or through the procedures of the Administrative Procedure Act," wrote ABC of Michigan, represented by the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation. "The policy has been implemented by unilateral edict from the governor's office. This is not a proper method of governance and is not binding on plaintiff." ABC of Michigan, Enbridge's Line 5 pipeline, Jimmy Greene, Gov. Rick Snyder, Department of Technology Management and Budget, Administrative Procedures Act, DTMB,

    State of Michigan plays peek-a-boo, redacting publicly available document

    July 21, 2022 // The state included in its response a document with several redactions, even though the same document is publicly available without the redactions. “This is yet another example of FOIA being applied improperly and inconsistently. The records produced in response to this request were available online, and in entirely unredacted form," says Steve Delie, director of labor policy at the Mackinac Center. “It is unclear whether these redactions were legally permissible, but it is clear is that public bodies are not applying FOIA in a way that encourages openness and transparency.”