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I know other diaries are addressing the historic vote by Volkswagen auto plant workers in Tennessee to unionize and be represented by the UAW this week.

But I wanted to highlight a humorous, and ironic, side story that has emerged out of that fight.

As some of you may know, and a diary or two may have discussed, the idiot Republican Legislature and Governor of Tennessee have threatened to eliminate the tax breaks that benefit Volkswagen for placing their manufacturing plant in the State.

And, some of your may also be aware of Texas Governor Rick Perry's famous trolling of California and Illinois for businesses due to their tax and regulatory policies.

Well, now the tables have turned.

The mayor of Lansing, Michigan, Virg Bernero -- a staunch pro-union Democrat -- has publicly invited Volkswagen to relocate their manufacturing plant to Lansing, if the idiot Republicans in Tennessee, eliminate their tax breaks.

"The legislature, the governor, they have the nerve threaten the support for expansion based on unionization? I was amazed by it, and then I smelled opportunity," said Bernero.

He posted on his facebook Monday saying "come to a real car town, leave Tennessee behind."

On Tuesday he sent out the formal request, and plans work with LEAP to send a whole packet of information to VW later this week.

"It's a little wild, but stranger things have happened. We're a car town. We have no problem with the unions, and we welcome all manufacturers."

Bernero said he discussed this with GM before making his statement, because GM has an auto plant in Lansing. They were fine with it.

The downright panic being displayed by Tennessee Republicans over the possibility that one of their auto plants might unionize is tragicomic, obviously. Their dumb billboards proclaiming the "United Obama Workers," and comparing it to a Civil War invasion by the "Union," are laughable. But, the consequences are very serious. Workers have been losing ground for decades, and this is just a small step toward restoring the balance between workers and management that has been dramatically tilted toward the latter over the past 35 years.

Let's hope VW learns that Tennessee, and Republicans, are idiots. And they move to a state which has no problem with unionized auto workers.

11:58 AM PT: Oh,I just wanted to add that to follow me on twitter, my handle is @hesiod2k11

Originally posted to Hesiod on Wed Feb 12, 2014 at 08:40 AM PST.

Also republished by Three Star Kossacks, Motor City Kossacks, Hellraisers Journal, In Support of Labor and Unions, and Michigan, My Michigan.

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