POLITICO is reporting that the Senate HELP Committee today confirmed Trump nominee John Ring, 12-11, to the National Labor Relations Board in what turned out to be a very narrow margin.
If confirmed by the full Senate, Ring would restore a Republican majority to the NLRB, which has been deadlocked 2-2 since Philip Miscimarra stepped down in December. Ring’s confirmation would allow the NLRB to overturn various Obama-era precedents, including Browning-Ferris, which made it easier to hold employers liable for labor violations committed by their contractors and franchisees, and Columbia, which allowed graduate students at private universities to unionize.
But Democrats say that Ring, an attorney for Morgan Lewis, has many potential conflicts of interest. Ring told the committee in writing that for the next two years he “will not participate in any matter that comes before the board” if Morgan Lewis “represents, or represented, a party.” He also agreed to seek guidance from the NLRB’s ethics officer whenever a future proceeding might pose a potential conflict of interest.
The committee also approved Marco Rajkovich to be a member of the Mine Safety and Health Review Commission.
As quoted in HR Dive, CUE CCAC member Phil Wilson cautions, it could be some time before his nomination is considered by the full Senate, Wilson said. “I would expect it’s at least going to be a couple months before he gets voted on,” Wilson added, “hopefully, I’m wrong.”