NLRB Chairman excoriates lone GOP member

posted at 3:25 pm on November 23, 2011 by Tina Korbe

National Labor Relations Board Chairman Mark Pearce is not happy with Brian Hayes, the lone Republican on the board. Hayes, if you’ll recall, sent a letter to lawmakers last Friday to express his dismay at the NLRB’s rush to adopt a rule that would allow snap union elections — an election process that would grant union representatives ample time to make a case for unionization but that would limit the amount of time company representatives would have to make a case against unionization.

In the letter, Hayes explained that he had been excluded from the initial rulemaking, as well as the revision process. He outlined the several ways the NLRB appears ready to abandon precedent so as to advance this snap election agenda. The board — now down to just three members, when it ordinarily consists of five — is prepared to pass the rule with just two votes (a simple majority for the now-three-member board), for example, when precedent suggested at least three votes are necessary to issue a rule, no matter the size of the board at any given time.

But Chairman Pearce says Hayes’ letter was utterly disingenuous. In a response letter to Hayes, Pearce claims that Hayes was kept fully abreast of the rulemaking process, was repeatedly invite to participate more deeply in that process and yet chose not to do so. Pearce asserts the authority of the Board to pass the rule with just two assenting votes — and says Hayes seems to think due process means “interminable process or, at least, process that extends until the Board is either disabled from acting or its composition changes.”

It’s hard to believe Hayes would refuse to engage in the revision process unless he had good reason to believe his input would be rejected — but, even if he did refuse to engage, if he did it as an attempt to forestall this disastrous rule, then delay and avoidance were excusable. In fact, the most interesting part of Pearce’s letter comes when he writes that Hayes has in the past indicated his willingness to resign should the Board proceed to consider such patently unfair practices as snap elections. Pearce writes:

In mid-October, I specifically discussed with you a potential schedule for consideration of the rulemaking. You did not offer any alternative schedule. You did not present me with any specific concerns you may have had with the substance of the proposed rules. Instead, you indicated that, if the Board proceeded with consideration of the matter, you would consider resigning your position.

In early November, in response to your suggestion that you would resign, thereby depriving the Board of a quorum and preventing the issuance of any form of final rule as well as the adjudication of many cases now pending before the Board, I offered to delay publication of a final rule …

I like how Pearce writes as though it would assuredly be a problem if the NLRB couldn’t issue any form of the final rule. (What would we do without the NLRB???) And, while he says he offered to delay publication of the final rule, he also scheduled for Nov. 30 a meeting to discuss and vote on the rule. That date falls conspicuously before the end of the term of the third member of the Board.

But, most importantly, to judge by Pearce’s letter, Hayes would consider resignation. That seems to me a good thing, for, as I’ve written before, that might be the only way to stop the adoption of snap elections.


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An election process that would grant union representatives ample time to make a case for unionization but that would limit the amount of time company representatives would have to make a case against unionization.

When did the Democrats start being adverse to Democracy?

Chip on November 23, 2011 at 3:31 PM

What outside (constituent) pressure can be put on National Labor Relations Board Chairman Mark Pearce?

That’s the only thing besides the Unions, that could influence him.

listens2glenn on November 23, 2011 at 3:32 PM

Organized Against Whom? focuses on certain central aspects of unionism and explores them both historically and analytically. The most obvious aspect involved is the answer to the question posed in the title: Who are unions organized against? The answer to this question is crucial both to our understanding of and sympathy toward unions. Union rhetoric claims that they are organized primarily against capital, in Marxist terms, or—in the contemporary formulations—management or employers. Union rhetoric also claims that they are organized for and represent labor generally, or “the worker.” On the contrary, my conclusion, supported by both reason and evidence, is that unions are most basically organized against other workers, that when a union is recognized by an employer he is in tacit alliance with it, and that the most direct results of unionism are unemployment and underutilization of workers. If this thesis is correct and acceptable, the person who declares that he is in favor of unions because he is on the side of the working man is confronted with yet another question: Which working man?
[My book]
Organized Against Whom? also focuses upon the nature and character of the union over the years. It does so not only to clarify who unions are organized against but also where they fit, if they do, within the economy and other institutions of society. Labor unions have an impact on—are organized against—more than other workers.

Over the years, they have contested with governments, management, other unions (in what are called jurisdictional disputes), and related industries to those in which they are organized. Beyond that, of course, they have made living more expensive for consumers generally. A

s for the contemporary opponent of unions who gives as his reason the fact that they have become too powerful, the historical record indicates that unions from the early 19th century down to the present have been basically organized to exclude other workers from competition with them for jobs. Whether they are powerful or not, that is the nature of their undertaking.

-Clarence Carlson

Akzed on November 23, 2011 at 3:40 PM

Sorry for the duplication! Dunno how that happened…

Akzed on November 23, 2011 at 3:41 PM

As a purely intellectual exercise, wouldn’t it require that Hayes do something more than resign to actually block the rule? IIRC, the two Labor members of the NLRB have delegated their authority to the Acting General Counsel, Lafe Solomon, in the event that no quorum is possible.

cthulhu on November 23, 2011 at 3:43 PM

Sorta reminds me of the fight on LA Occupy’s site. Birds of a feather…

PattyJ on November 23, 2011 at 3:43 PM

— and says Hayes seems to think due process means “interminable process or, at least, process that extends until the Board is either disabled from acting or its composition changes.”

Heh … guess this guy never heard about the “fleabaggers”.

Hey, it was the Dims that set that precedent – sucks when the shoe’s on the other foot huh?

Enjoy.

HondaV65 on November 23, 2011 at 3:44 PM

When did the Democrats start being adverse to Democracy?

Chip on November 23, 2011 at 3:31 PM

Some time in the early 1800′s.

chicken thief on November 23, 2011 at 3:44 PM

Hayes should resign this minute before Pearce calls a snap vote on the proposed snap election rule.

burt on November 23, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Just why do we have all of these boards and regulatory agencies when Congress does nothing but sit on its laurels and vote to create committees which do nothing? The private sector is about to suffer more, but no one in D.C. cares.

No one.

madmonkphotog on November 23, 2011 at 4:00 PM

Hayes should spend his Thanksgiving holiday getting advice from Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin.

Steve Z on November 23, 2011 at 4:03 PM

Fair is fair. What we should also allow is an energy company to spend all its time developing a way, for example, to ship Canadian oil to America. Then, the Environmentalist only get 2 weeks to formulate their rebuttal. Once the two weeks passes, and the company decides that it wants to go forward against the wishes of the Environmentalist, then so be it.

Mo_mac on November 23, 2011 at 4:21 PM

Mo_mac on November 23, 2011 at 4:21 PM

Me likey.

ctmom on November 23, 2011 at 4:34 PM

For the love of gawd, it’s 2011, not 1930. Labor unions are absolutely unnecessary in this day and age and so is the NLRB. The only reason they exist is to suck mass quantities of cash into the democrat coffers and how even the most staunch democrat can deny that with a straight face is beyond me.

Liars and thieves all of them.

Tim Zank on November 23, 2011 at 6:16 PM

I keep hearing a commercial on the radio with Rand Paul and some Federal Right to Work law….all states are Right to Work states.

Don’t know a damn thing about the details but that would be the cat’s a$$.

BigWyo on November 23, 2011 at 6:18 PM

The Republican should resign if it will stop the board from doing things.

forest on November 23, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Remarkably strong play by Hayes. Good for him.

Anyone who fails to grasp the fringe-left nuttiness of Obama and the disconnected stupidity of his fringe-left supporters (who somehow believe that he’s a “centrist”) — just look at the three craziest tools in his administration:

NLRB with Craig Becker, communist piece of sh!t — out of control
EPA with nitwit Lisa — out of control
DOJ with corruptocrat Eric Holder — injustice run amok

Centrist, indeed.

Jaibones on November 23, 2011 at 10:36 PM

When did the Democrats start being adverse to Democracy?

Chip on November 23, 2011 at 3:31 PM

Chip, please remember that “democracy” is nothing but mob rule by brute force. I would submit to you that Democrats have been driving toward that goal for more than century. Leftist National/Socialist Progressive Democrats such as the Democrat party in the United States are not adverse to democracy. It’s their core belief and the god they worship.

Happy Thanksgiving anyway.

oldleprechaun on November 24, 2011 at 10:37 AM