On Thursday, the Michigan Senate passed a resolution against the Employee Free Choice Act. The Employee Free Choice Act–which is currently pending before the US House of Representatives–would reform labor laws to make it easier for workers to form unions. The resolution was approved 20-16 along party lines.
The Michigan Senate resolution was sponsored by West Michigan Republican Mark Jansen. In a press release, Jansen said that the primary reason for sponsoring the resolution was to support the right to a secret ballot, which opponents of the Employee Free Choice Act have argued is eliminated under the Employee Free Choice Act.
However, advocates of the Employee Free Choice Act have pointed out that despite the “secret ballot” available under current labor law, the system is far from democratic. Moreover, they point out that under the Employee Free Choice Act workers can decide to either use elections or majority sign-up. Republicans and their business allies have argued that these changes would allow union organizers to intimidate or coerce workers into voting in support of a union, but they have largely ignored the fact that under current law employers routinely intimidate workers seeking to form unions.