In response to the anti-Democratic martial law being enacted in Michigan, Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) fired back, calling the bill unconstitutional, emphasis mine:
Worse yet, this bill raises serious constitutional concerns. Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution explicitly prohibits any State from impairing a contract, which is exactly what this legislation does. As the Supreme Court has held in Home Building & Loan Association v. Blaisdell (1934), the sanctity of contracts cannot be impaired by a state law “which renders them invalid, or releases or extinguishes them . . . . Not only are existing laws read into contracts in order to fix obligations as between the parties, but the reservation of essential attributes of sovereign power is also read into contracts as a postulate of the legal order.”
Rep. Conyers also inferred that some parts of this bill may be racially motivated, something Karoli at Crooks and Liars has also suggested:
The takeover provision of the legislation – allowing the dissolution of locally elected bodies — implicitly targets minority communities that are disproportionately impacted by the economic downturn, without providing meaningful support for improved economic opportunity.
Finally, Conyers also pointed out that by forcing a community in to bankruptcy (which will likely be done to force union consessions for public sector workers or just to break the collective bargaining contracts which the EMF also has the legal authority to do), the financial situation of the community will actually become worse.
Further, the bill empowers this financial czar with the Governor’s approval to force a municipality into bankruptcy, a power that will surely be used to extract further concessions from hardworking public sector workers. And, by making the risk of bankruptcy a reality, the bill will make it more not less expensive for municipalities to obtain financing given this risk, which will make the financial circumstances of municipalities even worse.