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House Passes Bill to Weaken NLRB's Ability to Enforce Labor Laws

September 15, 2011 - by Donny Shaw

In a move designed to get corporations jazzed up about donating to Republican candidates and not much else, the House of Representatives today passed a bill to weaken the National Labor Relations Board, which is in charge of enforcing the labor laws and remedying instances of unfair labor practices. The bill, which its sponsor, Rep. Tim Scott [R, SC-1], has titled the “Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act,” would amend the labor laws so that employers could legally take retaliation against workers trying to form a union by relocating or outsourcing their jobs. The vote was 238-186.

Specifically, here’s what the bill would do according to the Congressional Research Service:

Amends the National Labor Relations Act to deny the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) any power to:

(1) order an employer (or seek an order against an employer) to restore or reinstate any work, product, production line, or equipment;

(2) rescind any relocation, transfer, subcontracting, outsourcing, or other change regarding the location, entity, or employer who shall be engaged in production or other business operations; or

(3) require any employer to make an initial or additional investment at a particular plant, facility, or location. Applies the amendment made by this Act to any complaint for which a final adjudication by the NLRB has not been made by the date of enactment.

And here’s what it’s all about, via 2chambers:

At the heart of the House measure is a months-long dispute over whether Boeing unlawfully retaliated against its union employees in Washington state by transferring a production facility to South Carolina after a series of strikes. The NLRB in April ruled that by moving the facility to a right-to-work state, Boeing was in violation of federal labor laws.

According to Kevin Bogardus at The Hill, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid [D, NV] has already said that Reid has no plans to bring the bill to a vote in the Senate. Like I said at the top of the post, getting the bill through the Senate and signed into law isn’t the point anyways. The point is to appeal to anti-union corporate campaign donors, and that appears to be working. has already identified 191 businesses and business associations that are actively supporting the bill and donating to congressional incumbents.

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  • John_Westra 09/16/2011 10:39am

    @Donny Shaw Why is someone who is involved in Transparency and “Openness,” in Government, disgruntled when politicians, in line with the majority of U.S. Job Creators and a growing majority of Citizens, vote to support Free Market Values and a level playing field for employment and job creation?

  • Comm_reply
    luminous 09/16/2011 3:08pm

    “growing majority of Citizens”

    Polling actually shows the opposite, after the nonsense in Ohio And Wisconsin lots of polling has been done and more then enough of these polls show a super majority support unions, especially public unions.

    “majority of U.S. Job Creators”

    You mean the middle class?, jobs are created by businesses satisfying demand, demand is feed by the wages of the middle class. Things won’t be created for people who can’t buy them, hence the current problems can’t be solved until money is put back into the pockets of your average joe.

    “vote to support Free Market Values”

    How does Businesses using near slave Labor rates in foreign nations have anything todo with “free market”. Or how does businesses leaving our shores because of direct foreign government subsidies have anything todo with “free market”.

  • Comm_reply
    emolyn 09/18/2011 11:18pm
    How does Businesses using near slave Labor rates in foreign nations have anything todo with “free market”. Or how does businesses leaving our shores because of direct foreign government subsidies have anything todo with “free market”.

    Right, so obviously the solution is to make sure American labor is more expensive, that way no foreign company will want to build here and so we can give further incentives for American jobs to be relocated overseas. That seems to make sense…

    Also, by driving up the cost of labor you make every product more expensive, which shifts the burden from the company to the millions of American paying customers.

  • Comm_reply
    luminous 09/19/2011 2:20am

    Ok, so rather then fixing the real problem you want to reduce Working Americans to slave labor rates?,

    We need to fix our trade policy not reduce America’s working class to slave labor wages. Their is nothing wrong with us charging tariffs on Nations that charge us tariffs(like China who’s tariffs average 30% on American goods, we don’t tariff their exports to our Nation).

    Europe and South Korea directly subsidize their manufacturing and semiconductor industries, and in many cases their is direct government ownership that keeps otherwise unprofitable industries in their shores.

    It is also very common for Euro nations and Asian nations to run sovereign wealth funds that simply buy companies out and move them in shore without regard to the profits of that particular company. They can afford this because most Euro Nations have nationalized resource extraction industries to pay for it(look up Norway for example).

    Higher labor rates being a deteriorate to creating jobs here is a lie.

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  • marcforfreedom 09/16/2011 11:41am

    My personal opinion; this may help corporate America, but I believe it will probably hurt the small business person or the small individual inventors. The corporate world could steal their ideas too easily. I am as leery of big corporations as I am of congress.

  • paulines 09/16/2011 3:38pm

    This bill is pretty much DOI at the Senate and the President surely would not sign it into law. While I agree America needs to be more business friendly, we should not erode environment or worker protections to adjust to the failed trade policies which have left our nation at a severe disadvantage.

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