Right to work legislation is hot topic at NAIAS as Governor & U.S. Secretary of Labor tour show

Detroit (WXYZ) - One hot topic on the North American International Auto Show floor was Governor Rick Snyder's right to work legislation.

Governor Snyder, U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, and UAW President Bob King were all in Detroit checking out the show.  They have very different opinions of how the legislation will impact the auto industry, businesses in general, and our nation.

Governor Snyder knows that many of the union workers who made the vehicles he was checking out are frustrated with the fact he signed the legislation. It allows workers to decide to not join a union, even if they are working in a union position in a union shop.

Governor Snyder says they should appreciate the new law.

"It's to support freedom of choice for workers, so it is all about the worker," said Snyder.

Snyder says the legislation will be an incentive for businesses looking to locate in our state and help draw jobs to Michigan.

U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis disagrees.

She says the automakers have made money and created great products, such as those displayed at the auto show this year. She gives credit to collective bargaining units.  She says right to work legislation weakens a union's collective bargaining power.

"Union and management can come together, and work together, and move ahead and move our economy forward," she said.

"We are seeing jobs.  We are seeing companies make profits," said UAW President Bob King.  "It is because of collective bargaining. Working together to make sure we have competitive vehicles"

While the debate continues surrounding right to work, Governor Rick Snyder said he doesn't agree with how it is being used.

"We've done tax reform, regulation reform, and we have in attempt to bring jobs to Michigan," said Snyder.

He spoke about the Pure Michigan right to work ad recently published by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.  He says it was not an ad he would have created or personally approved. Its focus was too narrow.

"We shouldn't just focus on right to work, but the whole Michigan story of success," said the governor.

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