Even Republican voters support sick leave law killed by Michigan GOP


New polling shows that a vast majority of Michigan voters — including Republican voters — supported the paid sick leave and minimum wage initiatives.

Throughout 2018, Michigan voters made clear that they strongly supported helping the working people of their state with two major reforms: requiring businesses to provide paid sick leave, and increasing the minimum wage. Indeed, hundreds of thousands of voters signed petitions to get those measures on the ballot.

The GOP took that choice away from voters, however, by passing the measures in the Legislature just to kill them later. The outgoing Republican governor, Rick Snyder, recently signed two bills that substantially weaken both laws.

Throughout the lame-duck session, Michigan Republicans have made clear they don't care what Michigan voters want. And now, new polling confirms just how out of touch these Republican lawmakers are with their own constituents.

A huge majority of Michigan voters, including Republicans, support expansive paid sick leave and a meaningful minimum wage increase.

84 percent of Michigan voters — and 80 percent of Republicans — support the sick leave policy passed back in September, which required one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked, with a lower amount for small businesses.

But the GOP scrapped that proposal in favor of a much weaker law that exempts over 160,000 businesses and 1 million employees.

The same decisive support is seen for the minimum wage law. 77 percent of all voters support the original law that would have increased the minimum wage to $12 per hour by 2022. As with paid sick leave, this initiative also enjoyed substantial support from Republicans, 58 percent of whom favored it.

The message couldn't be clearer from GOP lawmakers in Michigan: They don't care what their own constituents want. They only care about pushing the Republican Party's anti-worker agenda.

And they're willing to push that radical, unpopular agenda even when their own supporters — the Republican voters keeping them in office — don't agree.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.