Proposal 1– A Referendum on the Emergency Manager Law (PA 4 of 2011)- If the President declared that Michigan was being mismanaged and he was going to suspend the power of our elected officials and appoint someone to run the state, we would literally be up in arms. No other state, to my knowledge, has implemented dictatorial powers such as those given under PA 4. Volunteers gathered signatures for this initiative and fought off legal attempts to prevent the people from having a say on the matter. Don’t suspend democracy because it is a convenient solution. Vote NO on Proposal 1!
Proposal 2– Guarantee Collective Bargaining in the Michigan Constitution- It is too bad that in Michigan, of all places, we would need to guarantee collective bargaining in the Constitution. However, our elected officials are more interested in pleasing corporate campaign contributors than they are protecting the values of a state built on the hard work and ingenuity of the automotive industry and its workers. The current “conservative” regime has passed over 650 laws, a number of which are aimed at limiting collective bargaining. Volunteers gathered more than twice the number of signatures needed to put this issue on the ballot. We need to restore collective bargaining rights in order to strengthen the middle class. Vote YES on Proposal 2!
Proposal 3– Mandate That 25% of Our Energy Come from Renewable Resources By 2025- Getting to 100% renewable energy as soon as possible is a great goal. However, there seems to be a lot of unknowns regarding renewable energy technology and writing it into the constitution may be an unnecessary risk. A law passed in 2008 mandated that we get to 10% renewable energy by 2015. We are only at 3.9% now, and we should achieve that goal before setting another. The strongest reason to vote no on this issue though is that it is not an initiative lead by Michiganders. The top 10 contributors to the Michigan Energy Michigan Jobs fund are groups from outside of Michigan. We should lead our own initiatives and set our own goals. Vote No on Proposal 3!
Proposal 4– Allow Home Health Care Workers Limited Collective Bargaining Rights- It appears that family members providing home health care may be against the proposal while people who are providing home health care as a profession may be for it. The group supporting Proposal 4 is called the Citizens for Quality Home Health Care. They list a business called Home Health Care, Inc. as their main contributor. There seems to be little information available on who is funding Home Health Care, Inc. So while collective bargaining is good, hiding your donors by running money through another organization is bad. It is easy to justify voting either way on this proposal. The benefits of giving people a voice in their working conditions is the tie breaker on this one. Vote Yes on Proposal 4!
Proposal 5– Require a 2/3rds Legislative Majority to Raise Taxes- When Governor Rick Snyder and Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero agree, you know something has bipartisan support. Requiring a 2/3rds majority gives too much power to a small number of people who can then use that power to hijack the legislative process to get special deals written into a bill. The U.S. Senate is a good case study in the inefficiency of requiring a super-majority to pass legislation. Don’t spend too much time thinking this one over. Vote No on Proposal 5!
Proposal 6– Require Voter Approval to Build any New Bridge or Tunnel from Michigan to Canada- This is a can of worms if there ever was one. Should you side with the Governor who is bypassing the legislative process or the billionaire Matty Moroun who is trying to protect his revenue stream? This is not a voter initiated fight. This is a pissing match between two rich and powerful people who have never been told no. The bottom line is that two wrongs don’t make a right. Vote No on Proposal 6!