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.