Have you seen this?
NLRB Withdraws Boeing Complaint
The National Labor Relations Board dropped a high-profile complaint against Boeing Co., a move that was expected after the aerospace company’s 31,000-member machinists union approved a sweeping contract extension earlier this week.
The NLRB said Friday that it withdrew the April complaint, which charged the aerospace company with illegally retaliating against the union for previous strikes by opening an aircraft-production line at a non-union plant in South Carolina.
The agency had filed the complaint on behalf of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers after siding with the union’s allegations. Boeing contested the charges, saying it had made a business decision and didn’t retaliate against the union. The case drew heavy criticism from the business community and some Republican lawmakers, who said the NLRB should not be interfering with companies’ choices about where to open factories….
The action makes sense — certainly a lot more sense than the agency’s previous position. I kept wondering where NLRB thought it was going with that. I mean, try to imagine the agency actually making Boeing pull back out of South Carolina. A federal agency telling a major corporation where it can do business within the United States? It would have been like nothing that I can recall in U.S. labor history. It would have required a complete rethinking of the role of government in the economy. It would have been way more radical than what GOP politicians seem to think Obamacare is.
Speaking of Republican politicians, this decision has left some of them off-balance. There they were in full outrage mode, and now, “Huh?” They’re like Wile E. Coyote, who suddenly realizes there’s no mesa beneath him.
Lindsey Graham is demanding an investigation:
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) is calling for a congressional investigation into collaboration between the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) union against The Boeing Company’s decision to build a second 787 Dreamliner production facility in North Charleston, South Carolina.
Graham’s announcement comes after the NLRB announced it will drop its complaint against Boeing.
Graham also reaffirmed today he will continue to place an indefinite Senate hold on nominations to the NLRB Board. Beginning in January 2012, the NLRB will have just two members. The Supreme Court last year ruled that an agency board with just two members lacks the authority to issue case rulings.
More to the point, the senator said, “For the sake of the Boeing South Carolina workers, I’m pleased to hear the frivolous complaint that has put a cloud over their operations has been lifted. However, it’s hard to celebrate an event which never should have happened…”