Group challenges Obama NLRB recess appointments

Michael P. Tremoglie Aug. 16, 2012, 2:49pm


WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) -- The National Right to Work Foundation filed an amicus curiae brief Aug. 13 in the continuing court wrangling about the December 2011 recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board by President Obama.

The case is the Center for Social Change, Inc. v. NLRB, which is pending now before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. This is just one such court case pending about the controversial appointments that many say were illegal since Congress was technically in session.

Another NRTW case is pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago. This case is among the first in the nation to reach the appellate level.

The NRTW argues that the recess appointments are unconstitutional because the U.S. Senate was still in session per the body's rules. Therefore the President could not make the appointments to the NLRB without Senate confirmation.

If this argument is validated then the NLRB has only two valid members and has lacked a quorum since December 2011. This would lead to an interesting question of what to do about rules and enforcement activities by the NLRB during that period.

"Barack Obama's so-called recess appointments to the Labor Board clearly violate the U.S. Constitution," said NRTW President Mark Mix. "Because the Board does not have a legitimate quorum, it must cease handing down rulings in Foundation-supported cases, and all other cases, until a legitimate quorum is established."

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