House Halts NLRB

The House of Representatives passed a bill to prevent the National Labor Relations Board from conducting much of its business until a dispute over the president’s recess appointments is resolved.

The measure, approved on a 219-209 vote that broke largely along party lines, is a response to a federal appeals court ruling in January that President Barack Obama violated the Constitution by filling vacancies on the board without Senate confirmation. The measure is not expected to gain traction in the Democratic-controlled Senate, where it goes next.

“Every decision it issues is ripe for appeal on the basis the board itself is not legitimate,” Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., said in a floor speech.

The bill would prevent the board from conducting business for the rest of the year unless the Senate confirms new members constituting a quorum or the Supreme Court decides the board has the authority to act.