With a polarizing vote of 58-51, the Republican-majority Michigan legislature passed the controversial “right-to-work” bill Tuesday. Reuters reported a congregation of approximately 12,000 protesters on the scene as final voting took place.
According to Reuters:
The House passed the measure making membership and payment of union dues voluntary for public sector employees such as teachers by a 58-51 vote. The Senate approved the same bill last week so it will now go to Republican Governor Rick Snyder, who has promised to sign it into law.
The public sector law was the first of two expected to be approved by the House on Tuesday. The other covers private sector workers, including the large auto industry in Michigan.
More than 12,000 workers from throughout Michigan and the U.S. Midwest protested as the legislature voted, most gathered in freezing temperatures and a light snow outside the building to show their displeasure.
Michigan State Police Inspector Gene Adamczyk said the Capitol was closed to visitors when it reached capacity of 2,200. An estimated 10,000 people demonstrated outside.
Next up, the bill will make its way to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk where he is expected to sign it into law.