Weigh In: Group Seeks Professors' Labor Emails 3-31-2011 - WNEM TV 5

Weigh In: Group Seeks Professors' Labor Emails 3-31-2011

Three Michigan public universities have been targeted by a Midland-based think tank that is seeking emails sent by faculty or staff in their labor studies departments that mention collective bargaining in Wisconsin or the terms "Scott Walker," "Wisconsin," "Madison" or "Maddow."
The Mackinac Center for Public Policy submitted the requests last week to labor studies departments at Wayne State University, Michigan State University and the University of Michigan.
Now many are wondering if these requests fit under the Freedom of Information act or if they aim to intimidate or embarrass and threaten professors who are tolerant of organized labor. The story has since been covered by the Lansing State Journal, Detroit Free Press, The Detroit News, The New York Times and MSNBC talk show personality Rachel Maddow.

TV5 Wants To Know: Should these emails be made public? E-mail or Facebook your thoughts now!

A similar effort by the Republican Party of Wisconsin to obtain emails sent by University of Wisconsin history professor William Cronon. Cronon wrote a blog post about a New York Times Op-Ed piece that was critical of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and the party’s efforts to weaken public sector unions, according to reports.
Ken Braun, editor of the Mackinac Center's online newsletter Michigan Capitol Confidential, has said his organization's requests were unrelated.
Braun told The Times, “As a general policy, we don’t discuss our FOIAs until we write about them.”
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