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White House Responds to Mich. Rep's Vow That 'There Will Be Blood': We're Not Sure That Means What You Think It Means


"The president believes in debate that’s civil." -- "They had knives."

Michigan, a traditional stronghold for organized labor, is currently engaged in an all-out struggle to become the Rust Belt’s second right-to-work state -- and some people aren’t taking it very well.

"We are about to undue 100 years of [labor progress],” said Rep. Douglas Geiss (D-Mich.) on Tuesday. “And there will be blood.”

"We will relive the Battle of the Overpass," he added, referring to a violent 1937 incident involving union workers and Ford Motor Company security guards.

Needless to say, Rep. Geiss’ choice of words has raised a few eyebrows. And considering the fact that President Obama on Monday threw himself headlong into Michigan’s right-to-work struggle, a few reporters felt it was necessary to get the White House’s take on the Michigan lawmaker’s “blood” vow.

“The president believes in debate that’s civil,” said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney during Tuesday’s press briefing. “I haven’t seen those comments and I’m not sure that they mean what some would interpret them to mean. I just haven’t seen them.”

Meanwhile, back in Michigan, a mob of alleged union protesters attacked a tent owned by Americans for Prosperity, a group that supports the right-to-work legislation.

[Warning: Coarse language]:

“They had knives,” AFP’s Annie Patnaude told The Washington Examiner. “They cut all of the ties (holding the tent up) and then they started slashing the tent itself … I remember them saying, ‘We’re going to destroy these people.’”

Activists also attacked a conservative commenter. You can see that video and our interview with the person who was punched here.

As TheBlaze reported yesterday, President Obama warned UAW employees on Monday that right-to-work legislation would threaten their ability to make a decent wage.

“What we shouldn’t be doing is trying to take away your rights to bargain for better wages,” the president told an enthralled audience in Redford, Mich. “These so-called right-to-work laws, they don’t have anything to do with economics, they have to do with politics.”

“What they’re really talking about is to give you the right to work for less money,” he added.

However, as we also mentioned yesterday on TheBlaze, right-to-work laws have nothing to do with so-called “collective bargaining rights.” It is unclear why President Obama would suggest that right-to-work laws infringe on a union’s ability to engage in collective bargaining.

Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

Featured image Getty Images.

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