The Corner

Recess Appointments Gone Wild

Among the fifteen recess appointments President Obama made when Congress adjourned for Easter break was Craig Becker, who Kevin called The “Shut Up” Candidate:

Becker, a lawyer for the AFL-CIO and SEIU, in many ways fits the mold of a typical Democratic pick for the agency, but there are three reasons to have serious reservations about putting him in such a powerful position. First: His opinions are extreme. He has argued that workers should be allowed to choose only between unions, not between a union and no representation, and he wants employers to be banned from even attending NLRB hearings about union elections. On the subject of the NLRB itself, he has gone so far as to write that “employers should have no right to be heard in either a representation case or an unfair labor practice case, even though Board rulings might indirectly affect their duty to bargain.” In other words: “Shut up.” Second: He is affiliated with ACORN, a corrupt enterprise that works the intersection of Big Labor and politics for its own benefit. Third: He has lied to Congress about his relationship with ACORN. On all of those grounds, his nomination should be opposed, vigorously.

When Senate Republicans (with an assist from Sen. Ben Nelson (D., Neb.)) sustained a filibuster against Becker’s appointment last month, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) — a long-time opponent of the recess appointment who called it “an end run around the Senate and the Constitution,” and kept the Senate chamber open during breaks to prevent George W. Bush from making them — gave President Obama his blessing to install Becker while Congress was away.

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