Michigan businesses power to pull the GOP has faded - KMSP-TV

Michigan businesses power to pull the GOP has faded

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LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) - Years ago when the business community put its muscle behind something and asked GOP lawmakers to jump, many of them said, “how high?”

Nowadays, not so much.
   
This is not your father’s Chamber of Commerce legislature anymore as its wallop has wained.  After all how many years has the Michigan Chamber been demanding lawmakers vote more money for the roads?  And it's still waiting.
   
The most recent example came last week when segments of the biz community got behind an effort to expand the state’s civil rights law to include the LGBT community.
    
These were not a bunch of mom and pop beer store owners unless you consider Blue Cross, Dow Chemical, AT and T, Consumers Energy, Steelcase and Herman Miller to be in that category.
    
“It’s impressive,” smiled Sen. Rebekah Warren the most liberal Democrat  in the state senate who welcomed the heavy-hitters to her side of this debate.  “It’s a wonderful day,” she felt,  but don’t think lawmakers are shouting how high?
     
The senate GOP leader seemed unmoved by the overture from his former employer Herman Miller and the others.
    
“I’m not doing anything until the budgets are done,” he advised everyone.  As for his attitude on the proposal itself?
    
“I think we have to take a hard look at that,” which is legislative-speak for, this ain’t (sic) going anywhere fast.
    
“I haven’t made a final decision,” which is legislative-speak for, he has not made a final decision.
     
Some in the LGBT community are sort of figuring after lawmakers have faced the voters and regain their seats, then in Lame Duck it will be safe for them to vote.
     
Mr. Richardville thinks his colleagues should stand up “before November…to see what they believe” before the voters have at them.  Oh yeah.  He’s not running again so that’s easy for him to say.
    
So all those businesses hoping to lure gay workers into their work force, will have to mark time with Ms. Warren and her friends.
     
They must be wishing for the old days when they spoke and Republicans jumped..
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