News Story

Survey says: 60% of Michigan residents support right-to-work law, only 17% oppose it

In union households, support is 55% to 28%

When Democrats take over the state Legislature in January, one of their goals may be to repeal the state’s right-to-work law, enacted in late 2012. A new survey of Michigan residents, however, shows that six out of ten people support the law.

When asked about their opinion of the right-to-work law, 60.0% of respondents said they approve it, 17.3% said they oppose it and 22.7% said they have no opinion. The margin of error was plus or minus 3.2%, meaning support within the general population could be as low as 56.8%, or as high as 63.2%.

People who lived in a union household were more likely to support right-to-work (54.5%) than oppose it (28.0%). Among nonunion households, support was even stronger, at 62.7%, with 15.2% opposing right-to-work.

A majority of Republicans, Democrats and independents all supported right-to-work. So did all age groups and income levels, as well as a majority of both men and women.

The survey of 1,026 Michigan residents was conducted Nov. 29 and 30. It asked respondents their age, partisan affiliation and where they lived in the state. It also asked the following question:

“Michigan passed a ‘right-to-work’ law 10 years ago. The law says that nobody can be required to pay dues or fees to a union in order to hold a job, even if they work in a job covered by a union contract. Do you support or oppose this law?”

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy, which publishes Michigan Capitol Confidential, conducted the survey.

Michael Thom, an associate professor of public policy at the University of Southern California and member of the Mackinac Center Board of Scholars, provided technical guidance.

Details of the survey can be seen at the Mackinac Center website.

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.