Since then, the NLRB has reached decisions that have harmed the ability of businesses to operate and hire, injected uncertainty into the marketplace, and negatively impacted the country as we continue to struggle mightily to recover from the Great Recession. For instance, the NLRB enacted a rule allowing for “ambush” elections which rush the collective bargaining process so significantly that workers cannot carefully consider arguments from both the business owner and labor organizer, while employers are severely restricted in their ability to provide information to their own workers. The Obama Labor Board also issued a decision which authorized the formation of “micro-unions” or small collective bargaining units made up of employees within one place of work. The decision only serves one discernible purpose: allow labor bosses to gain a foothold into workplaces they would not otherwise be able to as the majority of workers oppose the formation of a union.
With all this anti-business activity hosted in one agency, employees and employers were rightfully concerned, but anxiety turned into dismay when President Obama bypassed the U.S. Senate and tossed aside the advice and consent clause within the U.S. Constitution and made recess appointments to the NLRB while the Congress was convening in pro-forma sessions. Job creators knew the purpose, to continue to reward his largest political benefactor, but the President swore an oath to the constitution and was bound by it, as well as the system of checks and balances.
Therefore, when Obama’s NLRB reached a judgment against a Yakima-based beverage bottler in Washington State named Noel Canning, the legal route was pursued with the company arguing the order was invalid as the Board did not have a proper and legal quorum. And on January 25th, U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit agreed with the business and found that the so-called recess appointments made by President Obama were unconstitutional.
Unfortunately, the Board did not get the message. In fact, its chairman issued a statement shortly after the court reached its decision stating the federal agency was not bound by it. That has left Congress with no other alternative outside restricting these out-of-control bureaucrats and asserting its influence over the rogue agency. The solution put forward by legislators – the Preventing Greater Uncertainty in Labor-Management Relations Act – would temporarily prevent the Board from taking actions which require a quorum, meaning at least three members, until such time as the Senate confirms appointees to the federal agency, the U.S. Supreme Court rules on Noel Canning v. NLRB, or the first session of the 113th Congress adjourns, which will signify the conclusion of the terms of Sharon Block and Richard Griffin, the “recess” appointees in question.
The time has come for Congress to step in and address the actions of an administration that disregards the will of both the legislature and judiciary, both of which are co-equal branches of government. Members of Congress interested in standing up for the workers and businesses in their districts will vote in favor of the Preventing Greater Uncertainty in Labor-Management Relations Act.
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