Monday, March 29, 2010

Recess Appointments To NLRB Could Mean Trouble For Non-Union Employers

President Obama's recess appointments of Craig Becker and Mark Pearce to the National Labor Relations Board (the "NLRB") could mean big trouble for non-union employers. Messrs. Becker and Pearce are pro-union attorneys, but it is the appointment of Mr. Becker which has received the most publicity. Republicans have held up Mr. Becker's confirmation for months fearing that he would circumvent Congress to make labor laws more union-friendly. That fear may become a reality since Mr. Becker appears to favor the proposed Employee Free Choice Choice Act which, among other things, includes provisions that deny employers the right to demand a secret ballot employee representation election and could result in compulsory unionism.

In addition to the NLRB appointments, the President made 13 other recess appointments to other government positions. It's not surprising that these appointments were made since Presidents of both parties have used them previously to fill hundreds of positions during their terms. What is surprising is the claim by Republicans that the appointments will serve only to widen the divide between the parties. After recent passage of the contentious and emotionally charged health care bill, the Republicans intimated that there would be no further cooperation with the White House for at least the rest of the year. How much more of a divide could there be than that?

Regardless, Congress and the White House should be ashamed of themselves given all of the recent political arm twisting, backstabbing and horse trading that we have witnessed. It's time for politicians to stop gambling with our health and financial lives in their high stakes, winner-takes-all poker game. The American people deserve much better than that.

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