State of Michigan Archives: on Jobs


Rick Snyder: Extend unemployment benefits; plan for future

About 35,000 Michigan residents will continue receiving extended unemployment benefits under new legislation.

These benefits are a lifeline for many Michigan families who are struggling. Cutting them off so abruptly would have jeopardized the well-bein of those who are trying hard to find work. Now we must renew our focus on improving Michigan's economic climate. We will continue driving forward with our job-creating reforms so that fewer people need to rely on unemployment benefits.

Source: Michigan 2011 gubernatorial press release, #253317 Mar 28, 2011

Duncan Hunter: Unions built the middle class

Q: Are unions good for America?

HUNTER: A union is a receptacle of power, just like management. But those folks love this country, they love their family, and they helped to build a middle class, which has been important for America and for our party. We need to work with unions to win this presidency.

ROMNEY: There are some good unions and some not so good.

Q: Can you name a few “good” unions?

HUNTER: I can tell you a good union, the Steel Workers Union. When last year we had a strike in a Kansas plant that made the tires for our humvees, I called up the president of the Steelworkers and the president of Goodyear, and within a very short period of time, they were working together, they got that thing done for the good of the country.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Fred Thompson: In a dynamic economy, some jobs lost and some gained

Q: In the kind of dynamic economy you favor, lots of new jobs are created, but a lot of jobs are lost, as well. What would you do to help those that lose jobs?

A: Well, in a dynamic economy, there are jobs lost and there are jobs gained. And so far, there have been more jobs gained. To put up barriers and say that so-and-so cannot lose a job would be the wrong thing to do in a free-market economy that’s been so well for us. It’s made us the most prosperous nation in the history of the world.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Fred Thompson: Don’t use union dues for political purposes

Q: Are unions good for America?

A: I don’t have to pretend that I’m a union member because I have been a union member some time--the Screen Actors Guild still counts, doesn’t it?

Q: Yes, sir.

A: No, I believe in the rights of workers to band together for their own purposes, no question about that. I do not believe a person ought to have to be a member of the union to work. I do not believe that union bosses ought to use union dues for political purposes that their members don’t necessarily agree with, and I do not agree with them denying union members a secret ballot. But other than that, I think that they’ve done a lot of good over the years for this country and will continue to do so.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

John McCain: Unions are monopolies; don’t compel people to join

Q: Are unions good for America?

A: I think the unions have played a very important role in the history of this country to improve the plight and conditions of laboring Americans. I think that like many other monopolies, in some cases they have then serious excesses. I come from a right-to-work state. If someone wants to join a union in my state, they’re free to do so, but they are not compelled to do so. I think the key to unions is that any American has the right and privilege to join a union but should never be forced to do so. And this latest ploy of the Democrats of signing people up in the most willy-nilly fashion is something that needs to be rejected, because it will not protect the rights of workers who do not wish to join a union.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Mike Huckabee: Unions more prominent to fight high CEO salaries

Q: Are unions good for America?

A: The real fact is, unions are going to take a more prominent role in the future for one simple reason: A lot of American workers are finding that their wages continue to get strapped lower and lower while CEO salaries are higher and higher. And the reality is that when you have the average CEO salary 500 times the average worker, and you have the hedge fund manager making 2,200 times that of the average worker, you’re going to create a level of discontent that’s going to create a huge appetite for unions. So unions are the natural result of workers finally saying, “Look, I can’t go from a $70,000-a-year job to a $15,000-a-year job and feed by family of four.” That’s when unions are going to come back in roaring form.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Mitt Romney: I believe in domestic supports for our agriculture industry

Q: We subsidized farmers to the tune of $26 billion last year.

A: I believe in domestic supports for our agriculture industry. I don’t want to see our food supply be in the same kind of a jeopardy situation that our energy supply is in. And clearly there’s a responsibility of government to make sure that our farmers are treated on the same basis as farmers in Europe & other markets that we compete with. The WTO talks [may] find a way to bring down subsidies around the world, & that’ll be good news.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Mitt Romney: Good unions train members; bad unions hurt their company

Q: Are unions good for America?

A: There are some good unions and some not so good. The good ones are those that say, “How can we do a better and better job helping our members have better and better skills.”

Q: Can you name a few “good” unions?

A: Yeah, like the Carpenters Union, for instance, does a great job training their members and making them more effective and more efficient, and they get higher compensation as a result of it. There are also bad unions. I’m probably not going to name specific bad unions, but there are bad unions as well, which go too far and who forget that in order for them to be successful, the enterprise that they’re involved with has to also be successful.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Ron Paul: Right to organize; but no special benefits for unions

Q: Are unions good for America?

A: The right to unionize should be a basic right of any group. You should be able to organize. You should have no privileges, no special benefits legislated to benefit the unions, but you should never deny any working group to organize and negotiate for the best set of standards of working conditions.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Rudy Giuliani: Vibrant unions good; but compelling membership bad

Q: Are unions good for America?

GIULIANI: Sure, I think unions have made a positive contribution. My grandmother was an early member of the United Ladies Garment Workers Union, and I don’t know that our family would have gotten out of poverty without that. But the reality is that there are good unions, and there are bad unions. Our free economy is like that.

McCAIN: I come from a right-to-work state. If someone wants to join a union in my state, they’re free to do so, but they are not compelled to do so.

GIULIANI: You know, the UAW reached a very responsible pact the other day. I don’t know that you could have gotten a solution like that if you didn’t have a vibrant union. But there are ones that aren’t good unions, and I think the senator is correct -- people should have a right to either belong to a union or not.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Sam Brownback: Unions do good, but need effective oversight

Q: Are unions good for America?

A: Sure. They’ve been good for the United States, I think, historically. My mother was a union member. It helped her on health care. There can be abuses, and I think you’re seeing some of them taking place. And I think the government has to work aggressively to see that those don’t take place and that there is effective oversight, which I don’t think you see during a Democrat administration. I think that is good for union members to have that effective oversight.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Tom Tancredo: Union conflict is creative, but shouldn’t influence policy

Q: Are unions good for America?

A: The creative conflict that occurs between unions and management is usually a good thing. When unions, I think, get off track is when they start to influence public policy, especially with regard to allowing illegal immigration into the country, because they want to fill up their ranks. That’s why they can be problematic.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan Oct 9, 2007

Debbie Stabenow: President should meet with Big 3 Automakers

Q: What is it going to take to get the Big 3 Automakers going again?

STABENOW: We need a president who’s going to sit down with the automakers. This president can’t come up with 30 minutes to sit down with them. We’ve got to get healthcare costs off the back of business. We’ve got to protect pensions, and race like crazy for innovation. We make and grow things in America. That’s what its going to take. We’ve got to fight for those jobs here.

BOUCHARD: She says one thing and does another here. She’s a 18% rating from the Manufacturers Association, I won’t vote to raise taxes, or cut jobs. I’m a small business owner. We need someone who gets it and does results.

Source: 2006 Michigan Senate Debate in Grand Rapids Oct 15, 2006

Mike Bouchard: Big 3 Automakers need tax cuts so no job cuts

Q: What is it going to take to get the Big 3 Automakers going again?

STABENOW: We need a president who’s going to sit down with the automakers. This president can’t come up with 30 minutes to sit down with them. We’ve got to get healthcare costs off the back of business. We’ve got to protect pensions, and race like crazy for innovation. We make and grow things in America. That’s what its going to take. We’ve got to fight for those jobs here.

BOUCHARD: She says one thing and does another here. She’s a 18% rating from the Manufacturers Association, I won’t vote to raise taxes, or cut jobs. I’m a small business owner. We need someone who gets it and does results.

Source: 2006 Michigan Senate Debate in Grand Rapids, x-ref Stabenow Oct 15, 2006

  • The above quotations are from State of Michigan Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Jobs.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2012 Presidential contenders on Jobs:
  Democrats:
Pres.Barack Obama(IL)
V.P.Joe Biden(DE)

Republicans:
Gov.Mitt Romney(MA)
Rep.Paul Ryan(WI)
Third Parties:
Green: Dr.Jill Stein(MA)
Libertarian: Gov.Gary Johnson(NM)
Justice: Mayor Rocky Anderson(UT)
Constitution: Rep.Virgil Goode(VA)
Peace+Freedom: Roseanne Barr(HI)
Reform Party: André Barnett(NY)
AmericansElect: Gov.Buddy Roemer(LA)
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Page last updated: Dec 16, 2013