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The National Labor Relations Board Has Been Undoing Obama’s Legacy

The National Labor Relations Board Has Been Undoing Obama’s Legacy

By Tim Pearce

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) under President Donald Trump has overturned nearly every major pro-union ruling it made under former-President Barack Obama, The Washington Free Beacon reports.

The NLRB was able to reverse many Obama-era rulings and restore longstanding precedents with a 3-2 Republican majority before Chairman Philip Miscimarra’s term ended Friday. The board is now deadlocked at 2-2 until Trump names a new nominee.

“What the board has now done is restore some of the norms [of labor law]. The radical changes all occurred over the previous eight years,” Rick Grimaldi, a member of the Labor Relations Practice Group at Fisher Phillips, told The Washington Free Beacon.

Business advocates celebrated Miscimarra’s appointment as chairman back in April. Miscimarra, who believes each law should be interpreted based on its explicit text, had opposed many Obama-era rulings since he was nominated in 2013.

Unions and their supporters were not as receptive to Miscimarra’s appointment.

“The idea that you cannot look at the developments in the workplace and how it has changed over the past 80 years when it comes to interpreting the law is absurd,” New York labor rights attorney Joshua Parkhurst told The Washington Examiner.

Trump had asked Miscimarra to agree to serve on the NLRB for another five-year term. Miscimarra turned the offer down to spend more time with his family.

In the days before Miscimarra left, the board reversed two decisions that departed from years of precedent. In 2011, the NLRB gave unions the authority to organize “micro-unions” within a company that could hold elections not open to rest of a companies unionized employees. In 2015, the NLRB voted to hold employers liable for labor violations committed by franchisees or subcontractors that don’t work directly for the company.

 

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