Recess Appointments 

U.S. Supreme Court Strikes Down Obama Labor Board Recess Appointments

News Release

U.S. Supreme Court Strikes Down Obama Labor Board Recess Appointments

Right to Work Foundation attorneys argued Obama's purported recess appointments were invalid because Senate was not in recess

Washington, DC (June 26, 2014) – Today, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down President Barack Obama's controversial purported "recess appointments" to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed an amicus curiae brief in the case, Noel Canning v. NLRB. The brief was filed for the Foundation and Jeanette Geary, a worker who is receiving free legal assistance from Foundation staff attorneys in a case pending before the Board, which had been decided in part by the faux Board. Foundation staff attorneys had challenged the recess appointments in nearly a dozen other pending NLRB cases.

Click here to read the full release.

Former Rhode Island Nurse Files Brief in Obama NLRB "Recess Appointment" Supreme Court Case

News Release

Former Rhode Island Nurse Files Brief in Obama NLRB "Recess Appointment" Supreme Court Case

Invalid Labor Board negates Supreme Court's restrictions on union bosses' power to force workers to pay for union politics

Washington, D.C. (November 25, 2013) – A former Warwick, Rhode Island nurse has filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in the high-profile legal battle over President Barack Obama's recent purported recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

Jeanette Geary filed the amicus brief today with free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys.

Foundation staff attorneys argue in the brief 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.

Click here to read the full release.

NLRB Watch: Breakdown of Cases Invalidated By Noel Canning Decision

Foundation staff attorney, Ave Maria law professor, and former National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Member John Raudabaugh has published his latest installment to the Foundation's "NLRB Watch" blog feature.

In "NLRB Watch" #8, titled "What the Noel Canning Decision Means for NLRB Cases," Raudabaugh charts what cases may be subject to challenge in the wake of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia's ruling last month invalidating President Barack Obama's controversial purported "recess appointments" to the Board. The court held President Obama could not constitutionality make those appointments without U.S. Senate confirmation because the Senate was not in recess. National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed an amicus curiae brief jointly with the Landmark Legal Foundation in the case.

As a result of the court's ruling, since at least January 3, 2012, the Board has lacked a quorum as required by a U.S. Supreme Court precedent established in 2010, thus invalidating the Board's rulings since that time. Click here to see a chart displaying the many cases invalidated by the court's decision in Noel Canning.

Click here to read other posts located at the "NLRB Watch" page. And be sure to follow the National Right to Work Foundation on Facebook and Twitter to get alerts on new "NLRB Watch" posts!

FOUNDATION ACTION: Foundation's Brief Puts Illegitimate NLRB Appointees on the Spot

NOTE: This article is from the March-April issue of Foundation Action, our bi-monthly newsletter. You can sign up to receive a print edition of the newsletter here.


Foundation's Brief Puts Illegitimate NLRB Appointeees on the Spot

Order sought would force NLRB to cease and desist as long as illegal "recess" appointees remain 

WASHINGTON, DC - In late January 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia struck down President Obama’s controversial “recess” appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).  Obama made those “recess” appointments on January 4, 2012, despite the fact that the U.S. Senate was not in recess.

Upon the court’s announcement striking down Obama’s “recess” appointments, NLRB Chairman Mark Pearce issued a statement that the rogue Board was going to continue to operate as normal despite the appeals court decision.

In response, Foundation staff attorneys filed a petition for a writ of mandamus (or prohibition) with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit asking the court to order the NLRB to suspend further action in a union political lobbying case in which the Board defied Foundation-won Supreme Court precedent and granted union bosses the power to charge nonmember workers for union political lobbying activities.
A mere 12 days after the petition was filed, the court ordered the NLRB to respond and justify its continuing operation.

“For the first time, the NLRB must justify why it is continuing to operate despite the court’s finding that President Obama’s ‘recess’ appointments are constitutionally invalid,” said Ray LaJeunesse, Foundation Legal Director.  “And if the court shuts down the NLRB in this case, it will open the door for challenges in the other cases ruled on by Obama’s so-called ‘recess’ appointments.”

Worker protections at risk

As a result of the appeals court’s ruling, since at least January 3, 2012, the Board has lacked a quorum as required by a 2010 U.S. Supreme Court precedent – thus invalidating the Board’s more than 800 rulings and orders since that time.

One of those cases involves Jeanette Geary, a former Warwick, Rhode Island nurse at Kent Hospital, who filed federal charges against a local nursing union with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in September 2009.  The United Nurses and Allied Professionals (UNAP) union hierarchy was illegally forcing Geary and some of her coworkers, all nonmembers, into paying for the union bosses’ lobbying, including lobbying for legislation in neighboring Vermont.

The U.S. Supreme Court has long held that nonmember workers cannot be compelled to pay for union boss politics.  The U.S. Supreme Court held in the National Right to Work Foundation-won Communications Workers v. Beck case that nonmember workers cannot be forced to pay for union activities unrelated to workplace bargaining, such as members-only events and union political lobbying.

However, in December 2012, the invalid NLRB expanded union bosses’ powers to charge nonmember workers for union lobbying by a vote of three to one – flying in the face of long-standing Supreme Court precedent.  The Board then retained jurisdiction over the case pending further briefing on applying the ruling, forcing Foundation staff attorneys to file the petition that spurred the appeals court to demand an answer from the NLRB on the “recess” appointments issue.

Meanwhile, various federal appeals courts across the country are hearing similar challenges to the NLRB recess appointments. Foundation staff attorneys brought the issue before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago and have another challenge pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.  Moreover, challenges from other organizations are pending before the U.S. Court of Appeals for both the Third and Fourth Circuits.

NLRB appeals loss to U.S. Supreme Court

The three judge panel on the appeals court that struck down President Obama’s “recess” appointments ruled that Obama violated Article II of the U.S. Constitution, which requires the President to obtain the advice and consent of the U.S. Senate for appointments to the most powerful positions in the executive branch, and Article 1, Section 5, Clause 4 of the Constitution, which clearly states that Congress decides when there is a recess.

The appeals court adopted arguments made in an amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) brief filed by National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys for four workers who are receiving free legal assistance from the Foundation in cases pending before the Board.

After conferring with President Obama’s Department of Justice, the NLRB announced in mid-March that it will appeal the appeals court’s decision striking down Obama’s “recess” appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court.  The NLRB’s appeal sets up a no-holds-barred fight over Obama’s “recess” appointments before the High Court.

“We hope the Supreme Court will take this opportunity to rein in the out-of-control NLRB and restore the balance of power the constitution intended,” stated Mark Mix, President of National Right to Work.  “A favorable ruling could shut down the NLRB for the rest of Obama’s presidency, or at least flood it with a backlog of old cases the Board will have to reconsider, thus slowing its onslaught against workers’ rights.”

DC Appeals Court Orders NLRB to Respond to Foundation Petition

Earlier this month, National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed a petition in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit asking the court to order the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to suspend further action in a case that expanded union bosses' powers to charge nonmember workers for union political lobbying.

The petition was filed after the Board held that a union hierarchy could force nurses in Rhode Island to pay for union bosses' political lobbying, including lobbying in the state of Vermont.

Foundation attorneys filed the petition after the court ruled in January that President Barack Obama's controversial purported "recess appointments" to the Board are unconstitutional. The court held President Obama could not constitutionality make those appointments without U.S. Senate confirmation because the Senate was not in recess.

Today, the court ordered the NLRB to respond to the Foundation's petition within 30 days, and then allows Foundation attorneys to respond within 15 days after the NLRB responds.

The demand for briefing on the petition suggests the court's willingness to grant the writ of prohibition that would order the NLRB to cease and desist action on the Geary case. Stay tuned.

Worker Advocate Seeks to Halt Obama Labor Board from Acting in Union Lobbying Case

News Release

Worker Advocate Seeks to Halt Obama Labor Board from Acting in Union Lobbying Case

Labor Board moving to negate Supreme Court's restrictions on union bosses' power to force workers to pay for union politics

Washington, DC (February 11, 2013) – Today, National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed a petition in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit asking the court to order the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to suspend further action in a case that expanded union bosses' powers to charge nonmember workers for union political lobbying.

The petition was filed in the wake of the court's ruling last month invalidating President Barack Obama's controversial purported "recess appointments" to the Board. The court held President Obama could not constitutionality make those appointments without U.S. Senate confirmation because the Senate was not in recess. National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed an amicus curiae brief jointly with the Landmark Legal Foundation in the case.

As a result, since at least January 3, 2012, the Board has lacked a quorum as required by a U.S. Supreme Court precedent established in 2010, thus invalidating the Board's rulings since that time.

Click here to read the full release.

Right to Work President Mark Mix Discusses Obama's Controversial "Recess" Appointments on The Blaze TV

National Right to Work President Mark Mix appeared on The Blaze TV to discuss a recent DC Court of Appeals ruling that strikes down President Obama's unconstitutional "recess" appointments to the NLRB. Check out the full video below:





National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation staff attorneys are challenging the Obama "recess appointments" in multiple cases on behalf of employees who have had their rights violated.

For more on the Obama Administration's unconstitutional attempts to pack the NLRB, check out our recent press release on the issue.


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Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down Obama Labor Board Recess Appointments

News Release

Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down Obama Labor Board Recess Appointments

Right to Work Foundation attorneys argued purported recess appointments were invalid because Senate was not in recess

Washington, DC (January 25, 2013) – Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit struck down President Barack Obama's controversial purported "recess appointments" to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed an amicus curiae brief jointly with the Landmark Legal Foundation in the case, Noel Canning v. NLRB.

The brief was filed for four workers who are receiving free legal assistance from National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys in cases pending before the Board.

Mark Mix, President of the National Right to Work Foundation, issued the following statement in light of the court's decision:

"Today, the court agreed with Foundation attorneys: Barack Obama's so-called recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board clearly violate the U.S. Constitution. Because the U.S. Senate was not in recess the President could not make the appointments to the NLRB without Senate confirmation.

"As a result, the Board has lacked a quorum since January 3, 2012, and under a U.S. Supreme Court precedent established in 2010, the court's ruling invalidates the Board's biased and decidedly pro-Big Labor rulings since that time. The court's decision in Noel Canning is a victory for independent-minded workers who have received unjust treatment at the hands of the pro-Big Labor NLRB and will hopefully serve as a persuasive example to other federal courts deciding on the validity of Obama's purported recess appointments."

Click here to see the press release.

Arizona Fry's Workers File Brief Challenging Obama NLRB "Recess Appointments"

News Release

Arizona Fry's Workers File Brief Challenging Obama NLRB "Recess Appointments"

Union officials' illegal forced-dues scheme violated possibly thousands of workers' rights

Washington, DC (December 19, 2012) – With free legal assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation, several employees from Fry's Food Stores locations in Arizona are challenging President Barack Obama's recent purported recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

Shirley Jones of Mesa, Karen Medley and Elaine Brown of Apache Junction, Kimberly Stewart and Saloomeh Hardy of Queen Creek, and Tommy and Janette Fuentes of Florence initially filed federal unfair labor practice charges against the United Food & Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 99 union hierarchy and Fry's management after union and company officials continued to seize union dues from their paychecks despite repeated requests to stop.

Click here to read the full release.

Workers Challenge Obama Labor Board Recess Appointments in Federal Appeals Court

News Release

Workers Challenge Obama Labor Board Recess Appointments in Federal Appeals Court

Attorneys argue purported recess appointments are invalid because Senate was not in recess

Washington, DC (October 1, 2012) – National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys filed a brief in yet another legal battle over President Barack Obama's purported "recess appointments" to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

Foundation attorneys filed the amicus curiae brief jointly with the Landmark Legal Foundation on Wednesday in the case Noel Canning v. NLRB, pending now before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

The brief was filed for four workers who are represented by their Foundation attorneys in cases pending before the NLRB.

Click here to read the full release.


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