NLRB:  Law Breakers?

NLRB: Law Breakers?

Conn Carroll of the Washington Examiner raises an interesting question:  Did the National Labor Relations Board violate federal law? What if there were emails showing Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor coordinating with Attorney General Eric Holder and White House press secretary Robert Gibbs on how the Obama administration should fight judicial challenges to Obamacare? At a bare minimum, Justice Sotomayor would have to recuse herself from the case, she might be impeached, and Holder would face serious ethics questions as well. But such emails do not exist ... concerning Obamacare. When it comes to the National Labor Relations Board suit against Boeing, that is a different story. Cause of Action, a government accountability nonprofit, has obtained emails through a Freedom of Information Act request showing then-NLRB Chairwoman Wilma Liebman, NLRB Acting General Counsel Lafe Solomon and NLRB Public Affairs Director Nancy Cleeland coordinating the board's response to its own decision to sue Boeing for opening a factory in the right to work state of South Carolina. But, since the NLRB is an independent agency, shouldn't they be allowed to coordinate about ongoing litigation? Yes and no. The NLRB is supposed to be an independent agency, capable of creating rules, enforcing them and adjudicating them. But because the NLRB has within itself all of the governing powers our Founding Fathers believed should be separated (legislative, executive and judicial), its creators also wrote rules making it illegal for board employees who perform different functions from communicating with each other under certain circumstances. Specifically, 29 C.F.R. 102.126 and 29 C.F.R. 102.127 forbid a member of the board from requesting or "knowingly caus[ing] to be made" any ex parte communications with any interested person outside the agency relevant to the proceeding. That same regulation also forbids any "interested person outside this agency" from making any ex parte communications to board members.

NLRB's chief lawyer should stop obstructing Congress

NLRB's chief lawyer should stop obstructing Congress

Peter Schaumber, the former chairman of the National Labor Relations Board, is urging the current NLRB to stop stonewalling Congress with regard to their efforts to punish Boeing and Right to Work States: “House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa of California needs to resolve the impasse over requested Boeing documents with Lafe Solomon, the acting general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board. Congress has a right to know now whether the Boeing complaint reflects benign poor judgment or an abuse of the agency's prosecutorial discretion. Already, we know the filing of this complaint is chilling business investment in the United States, and for good reason. Since mid-May, Solomon has by and large stonewalled the committee's request for pre-complaint documents relating to the Boeing complaint. After a series of unproductive letters, the committee finally issued a subpoena for the documents on Aug. 12. Tensions mounted recently when the agency was found to have deleted certain emails from the few pre-complaint documents it provided the committee. This action demonstrates a decided lack of seriousness in responding to the congressional subpoena. Does the acting general counsel believe his office is immune to oversight? The Supreme Court has long recognized that the power of Congress to investigate "with process to enforce it -- is an essential and appropriate auxiliary to the legislative function" (McGrain v. Daugherty). The fact that the agency is "independent" of the executive branch does not immunize it from congressional oversight; it makes legislative oversight all the more necessary.

NLRB's chief lawyer should stop obstructing Congress

NLRB's chief lawyer should stop obstructing Congress

Peter Schaumber, the former chairman of the National Labor Relations Board, is urging the current NLRB to stop stonewalling Congress with regard to their efforts to punish Boeing and Right to Work States: “House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa of California needs to resolve the impasse over requested Boeing documents with Lafe Solomon, the acting general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board. Congress has a right to know now whether the Boeing complaint reflects benign poor judgment or an abuse of the agency's prosecutorial discretion. Already, we know the filing of this complaint is chilling business investment in the United States, and for good reason. Since mid-May, Solomon has by and large stonewalled the committee's request for pre-complaint documents relating to the Boeing complaint. After a series of unproductive letters, the committee finally issued a subpoena for the documents on Aug. 12. Tensions mounted recently when the agency was found to have deleted certain emails from the few pre-complaint documents it provided the committee. This action demonstrates a decided lack of seriousness in responding to the congressional subpoena. Does the acting general counsel believe his office is immune to oversight? The Supreme Court has long recognized that the power of Congress to investigate "with process to enforce it -- is an essential and appropriate auxiliary to the legislative function" (McGrain v. Daugherty). The fact that the agency is "independent" of the executive branch does not immunize it from congressional oversight; it makes legislative oversight all the more necessary.

Heritage Foundation: Right to Work Creates Jobs and Choice

James Sherk of the Heritage Foundation confirms what we have known for decades, enacting Right to Work laws create jobs and promote choice for workers: Union contracts frequently require employees to pay union dues or lose their jobs. This forces workers to support the union financially even if the union contract harms them or they oppose the union’s agenda. Several states, including New Hampshire and Indiana, are considering right-to-work laws, which protect workers from being fired for not paying union dues. Unions oppose these laws because they reduce union membership and income. However, the rest of the economy benefits from right-to-work laws. States can and should reduce unemployment by becoming right-to-work states. Right-to-Work Unions often negotiate contracts requiring all workers to pay union dues or lose their jobs, whether or not they support the union. But many workers reject unions. Some do so because union contracts reduce their pay. Others oppose unions’ political agendas: Unions almost exclusively support Democrats, despite 37 percent of their members voting Republican in the last election.[1] To prevent workers from being forced to support unions financially, 22 states have passed right-to-work laws. Such laws prevent companies from firing workers who do not pay union dues. Workers may still pay voluntarily, but unions cannot threaten their jobs if they do not join. Lawmakers in several states, including New Hampshire, Indiana, and Michigan, are considering right-to-work bills. Forced Unionization Is Not an American Value The government should not force workers to pay for unwanted union representation. In a free society, workers alone should make that choice. Right-to-work laws also make good economic sense. They reduce the incentive for union organizers to target companies that treat their workers well. Since unions hurt businesses, less aggressive union organizing attracts investment—and jobs. Lawmakers considering right-to-work proposals should ignore the union movement’s self-interested opposition. Unions could negotiate contracts that apply only to their members—they simply prefer not to. Unions should not be able to force workers to choose between financially supporting them and losing their jobs. Unions Lose Money When Workers Opt Out

House Chastises Obama NLRB's Top Lawyer

House Chastises Obama NLRB's Top Lawyer

Right to Work President Mark Mix: "At a minimum, the House should consider appropriations amendments cutting off funds for pursuing the Boeing case and for implementing several other ongoing NLRB power grabs." Credit: Fox Business News But Board Abuses Will Intensify Unless Congress Does Much More (Source: October 2011 NRTWC Newsletter) On September 15, the U.S. House voted 238-186 to rebuke Acting National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel Lafe Solomon for trying to dictate where businesses may or may not expand. By passing H.R.2587, the Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act, last month, the House made a judgment that NLRB bureaucrats like Mr. Solomon should not have the power to order an employer to relocate jobs from one site to another. House members were responding specifically to Mr. Solomon's decision in April to file a complaint against Boeing for initiating a new aircraft production line in Right to Work South Carolina. In several public statements, Boeing executives had made no bones about the fact that their decision to expand in a Right to Work state was prompted largely by their desire to avoid or at least mitigate multi-billion-dollar revenue losses stemming from disruptive strikes. Agreeing with International Association of Machinists (IAM, AFL-CIO) union kingpins who had repeatedly ordered employees at Boeing's Washington State and Oregon facilities out on strike, Mr. Solomon claims these statements show Boeing was motivated by "anti-union animus." Consequently, the South Carolina expansion is illegal, declares Mr. Solomon. The Boeing case is currently before an NLRB administrative law judge and could potentially drag on for years. As Politics, 'the NLRB Issue Is a Doozy' For Big Labor Politicians Sponsored by pro-Right to Work freshman South Carolina Congressman Tim Scott (R), H.R.2587 aims to stop Mr. Solomon from penalizing employers legitimately concerned with strikes that disrupt production and alienate customers by telling them where they can or can't locate jobs.

House Chastises Obama NLRB's Top Lawyer

House Chastises Obama NLRB's Top Lawyer

Right to Work President Mark Mix: "At a minimum, the House should consider appropriations amendments cutting off funds for pursuing the Boeing case and for implementing several other ongoing NLRB power grabs." Credit: Fox Business News But Board Abuses Will Intensify Unless Congress Does Much More (Source: October 2011 NRTWC Newsletter) On September 15, the U.S. House voted 238-186 to rebuke Acting National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel Lafe Solomon for trying to dictate where businesses may or may not expand. By passing H.R.2587, the Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act, last month, the House made a judgment that NLRB bureaucrats like Mr. Solomon should not have the power to order an employer to relocate jobs from one site to another. House members were responding specifically to Mr. Solomon's decision in April to file a complaint against Boeing for initiating a new aircraft production line in Right to Work South Carolina. In several public statements, Boeing executives had made no bones about the fact that their decision to expand in a Right to Work state was prompted largely by their desire to avoid or at least mitigate multi-billion-dollar revenue losses stemming from disruptive strikes. Agreeing with International Association of Machinists (IAM, AFL-CIO) union kingpins who had repeatedly ordered employees at Boeing's Washington State and Oregon facilities out on strike, Mr. Solomon claims these statements show Boeing was motivated by "anti-union animus." Consequently, the South Carolina expansion is illegal, declares Mr. Solomon. The Boeing case is currently before an NLRB administrative law judge and could potentially drag on for years. As Politics, 'the NLRB Issue Is a Doozy' For Big Labor Politicians Sponsored by pro-Right to Work freshman South Carolina Congressman Tim Scott (R), H.R.2587 aims to stop Mr. Solomon from penalizing employers legitimately concerned with strikes that disrupt production and alienate customers by telling them where they can or can't locate jobs.