Pres. Obama Issues Recess Appointments

Posted: Mar 27, 2010 5:15 PM
Unable to secure Senate approval, President Obama issued 15 recess appointments today, including naming Craig Becker to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).  As the Washington Post notes, Becker's appointment was one of the most controversial, drawing unanimous objections from Republicans in the Senate:

Obama's decision installs Becker and Democratic union lawyer Mark Pearce at NLRB, a five-member body that has operated with only two members for more than two years... 

Senate Republicans warned Obama on Thursday against appointing Becker by recess appointment, arguing his legal work for the Service Employees International Union and AFL-CIO suggests he would unfairly represent the interest of labor unions.

Reaction to Becker's appointment was almost immediate.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Obama's decision to appoint Becker is "clear payback by the administration to organized labor."

"Time and again questions have been raised over Mr. Becker's ability to serve in an honest and impartial manner on the NLRB, yet this administration chose to ignore the questions and concerns and instead forced their will on the American people," McCain said in a statement.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce noted that Becker was the first NLRB pick it had opposed since 1993.

"The business community should be on red alert for radical changes that could significantly impair the ability of America’s job creators to compete," the Chamber said in a statement.

The business community has vigorously opposed Becker's appointment because of his record and radical views on labor relations. On Feb. 9, the Senate failed to invoke cloture in a bipartisan 52-33 vote.