Right to Work Foundation Attorneys Move to Disqualify Controversial Recess Appointees from Six Cases
Argue Labor Board does not have legitimate quorum to hear pending cases
Washington, DC (January 30, 2012) – Today, National Right to Work Foundation attorneys filed motions with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to disqualify President Barack Obama's recent purported recess appointees to the agency from participating in the Foundation's six cases pending before the Board.
Foundation attorneys argue that the appointments are unconstitutional and, therefore, the Board lacks the quorum necessary to hear Foundation cases. This legal challenge is part of an ongoing controversy over the constitutionality of Obama's recent move to install three members to the NLRB as "recess appointees" despite the fact that the U.S. Senate was not in recess.
Foundation attorneys also were among the first to challenge the constitutionality of Obama's "recess appointments" in federal court. An earlier motion challenging the appointments, filed by the Foundation and other plaintiffs challenging the NLRB’s notice posting rules, is pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
If Obama's NLRB appointments are unconstitutional, then the Board has only two members and lacks a quorum to enact rules or enforce federal labor law under a U.S. Supreme Court precedent issued in 2010. Foundation attorneys are raising the issue now, at the earliest possible opportunity, while anticipating that the issue will eventually reach the federal courts of appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court.
The cases involved are: Richards & Yost v. Steelworkers; Sands v. Food & Commercial Workers; Gray v. Coupled Products, LLC. & UAW Local 2049; Lugo v. Electrical Workers Local 34; Geary v. Nurses & Allied Professionals Local 5008; and Stewart v. UFCW Local 99 & Fry’s Foods of AZ.
"Barack Obama's so-called recess appointments to the Labor Board clearly violate the U.S. Constitution," said Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation. "Because the Board does not have a legitimate quorum, it must cease hearing Foundation cases until a legitimate quorum is established."
The Chairman of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee announced last week that a panel will investigate the constitutionality of the purported recess appointments next month.
Read one of the Foundation attorneys' motions to disqualify the "recess appointees" here.