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GOP Gov. Snyder signs Michigan anti-union bills

Michigan's Republican Gov.
Governor Rick Snyder (AP Photo/Detroit News, Dale G. Young)
Governor Rick Snyder

Michigan's Republican Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law a pair of "right-to-work" measures on Wednesday designed to cripple unions, take away worker rights and undercut the middle-class.

The laws prohibit public and private-sector unions from requiring employees to join and contribute dues.

It is a stunning blow to organized labor in a state that is home to the auto industry and the symbol of industrial labor in the U.S.

Snyder, who had said "right-to-work" legislation was too divisive for Michigan, signed the bills late Tuesday despite protests from more than 12,000 people who descended on the state Capitol in Lansing in a massive push back against Republican lawmakers.

"I view this as an opportunity to stand up for Michigan's workers, to be pro-worker,'' Snyder said at a news conference after he signed the bills.

Michigan becomes the nation's 24th "right-to-work"' state and only the second in the industrial Midwest.