Human Resources News & Insights

Obama’s NLRB appointments were unconstitutional, court rules

Here’s another nomination for the list of court cases you need to keep an eye on in the coming months: A federal appeals court in Washington, DC has ruled that President Obama’s recent appointments to the National Labor Relations Board violated the Constitution. The case is likely going to end up before the Supreme Court.

The Obama administration claimed the president used his recess appointment powers to name two Democrats — DOL official Sharon Block and union attorney Richard Griffin — and Republican Terence Flynn during the holidays, when the Senate was supposedly not in session.

But the DC judge ruled that the Senate was in “pro-forma” session — so Obama’s NLRB appointments were unconstitutional.

The ruling came out of a case filed by Noel Canning, which was challenging an NLRB ruling that the company violated labor law during negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement with union employees.

The case is Canning v. NLRB.

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