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Stateside: Lame duck concludes, 2013 comes into focus

Lansing’s lame duck session has ended, allowing politicians to focus on their 2013 agendas.

To better understand what both parties will discuss, we heard from Saul Anuzis and Debbie Dingell.

Anuzis is the former Chairman of the Michigan Republican Party and Dingell is a Democratic National Committeewoman.

Dingell expressed concern over the speed with which right-to-work legislation passed.

“People in Michigan were stunned by many of the bills that passed so quickly without discussion,” said Dingell.

“The lame duck session every two years is something where a lot of bills move very quickly. I don’t think anybody was surprised…” said Anuzis.

“The reality is this isn’t the best way to have legislation done. But it is a political reality,” he continued.

Anuzis was doubtful that people would forget about Snyder’s choice to pass the bill.

“I’m not sure people are going to forget. I think it was great people showed up on the steps of the Capitol…” said Anuzis.

He claimed that, in the long-term, right-to-work would be good for the state.

However, Dingell found the bill troubling.  

“The tension we’re going to see in this state is something that really bothers me. I think we’ve made tremendous progress in the last decade of business and labor working together…I think that trust was literally eliminated in a week,” said Dingell.

Dingell claimed that unions brought the middle class to Michigan.

“I think that there’s no reason that labor and the business will not continue to work together. The UAW will still be there…it’s just that individual workers are going to have a choice not to belong to a union…” said Anuzis.

Anuzis did not think Snyder’s record would be tarnished.

“I’m not sure he’ll pay a price…I think that in the end Snyder will be judged on his successes…” said Anuzis.

Dingell, however, disagreed.

“I think his move stunned people,” she said.

She continued to claim that his passing the right-to-work legislation demonstrated his straying from his moderate politics.

Both guests agreed that partisan politics will need to diminish for further progress to occur.

“I think the American people want to see people get along. When we’re dealing with problems, we’re not Democrats or Republicans; we’re Americans,” said Dingell.

“The problem we have is, rather than looking for the common ground, there is always the issue that divides us…Those of us who are willing to work together are going to have to stand up,” said Anuzis.

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