Wall Street Journal Editorial Urges Quick Action on Ensuring Republican Majority on NLRB

February 03, 2017

A Wall Street Journal editorial urges the President to quickly fill the National Labor Relations Board's vacancies with new Members who will provide balance to its decisions and observes that, for a Republican-majority Board, "confronting the worst of the NLRB precedents could be a four- to eight-year project" even as "restoring labor law to its proper role of even-handed adjudication is crucial to reviving business investment and jobs."  Meanwhile, President Trump designated two Republicans as the new Chairs of the NLRB and the EEOC.  Republican NLRB member Philip A. Miscimarra was chosen as Acting Chairman of the NLRB and Victoria A. Lipnic (R) was picked as Acting Chair of the EEOC.  Underscoring the need to fill the seats soon, a new Board will face a significant and unprecedented number of Obama Board decisions to correct.  According to a Littler report published last December, the Obama Administration's NLRB "upended 4,559 total years of established law" through 91 cases and the adoption of "comprehensive new election rules."  The study goes on to note, "A high percentage of the precedents the Obama Board overturned were more than ten years old and had been previously adopted by Board members of both political parties."  Meanwhile, Ms. Lipnic is the lone Republican on the Commission, along with three Democrats and one vacant seat, which will greatly limit the ability of the EEOC to reverse any ill-advised Obama era regulations until former Chair Jenny Yang’s (D) term expires July 1, 2017.  As a result, action to reconsider and possibly rescind the requirement that employers begin reporting compensation data on the revised EEO-1 in March 2018 (for calendar year 2017) is likely to be delayed until a Republican majority on the Commission is in place.  The only other alternative would be for Congress to block implementation of the revised EEO-1 when it finalizes funding for fiscal year 2017 this spring or enacts 2018 funding in September.