LANSING — Weeks after ramming a package of so-called “right-to-work” legislation through the lame duck Legislature without any committee hearings and sending it to Gov. Rick Snyder for a quick signature, Michigan Republicans have co-opted the “Pure Michigan” tourism campaign by announcing the right-to-work bills with a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal. Expressing their outrage at this grandstanding are House Democratic Leader Tim Greimel (D-Auburn Hills) and state Representative Brandon Dillon (D-Grand Rapids).

“Apparently, it is not enough for Republicans, against the wishes of thousands of Michigan workers, to endanger collective bargaining and lower wages across the state by passing right-to-work,” Greimel said. “Now, they feel they must gloat about it by purchasing a full-page ad in a national newspaper. So much for the governor’s talk about reaching across the aisle to achieve common goals.”

The Michigan Economic Development Corp. originally started its “Pure Michigan” effort to demonstrate our state’s natural beauty and vibrant cities to people around the state and the country. In 2009, Forbes magazine named it one of the best tourism campaigns of all time. Reports cite the Pure Michigan Facebook page flooded with comments opposing the Wall Street Journal ad, demonstrating once again how out of touch Michigan Republicans are with the state’s middle-class men and women.

“The ‘Pure Michigan’ campaign is an award-winning, successful effort to showcase the best of what our state has to offer. It used to be something all Michiganders could be proud of,” Dillon said. “Now it’s being used to push a divisive issue and as another front for the special interests that have taken hold in Lansing. This is a pure perversion of what Michigan residents want to see from their leaders.”