Washington Recess Almost Over
The summer recess is almost over in Washington, and politicians are preparing to head back into session and attack a slew of issues including tax reform, the government debt ceiling, and funding for a border wall along with many others. It’s no secret the Democrats and the Republicans are at odds over the issues, and are using every legislative tool possible to fight for their own positions. I’ve also heard from several updates inside the Beltway that the Democrats are doing everything possible to make each and every nominee confirmation take as long as possible. Coupling this with the slow pace at which the White House has been advancing nominees for some positions, and we have a lot of government slowdown at the Cabinet and Agency level.
Everybody Is Preparing For A Tough Fall in Washington D.C.
We also have the growing tension between President Trump and leaders in Congress which is increasing daily basis.
I requested that Mitch M & Paul R tie the Debt Ceiling legislation into the popular V.A. Bill (which just passed) for easy approval. They… — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 24, 2017
…didn’t do it so now we have a big deal with Dems holding them up (as usual) on Debt Ceiling approval. Could have been so easy-now a mess! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 24, 2017
The only problem I have with Mitch McConnell is that, after hearing Repeal & Replace for 7 years, he failed!That should NEVER have happened! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 24, 2017
If Senate Republicans don’t get rid of the Filibuster Rule and go to a 51% majority, few bills will be passed. 8 Dems control the Senate! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 25, 2017
Tough to get anything done
This means it’s taking a lot longer to “get stuff done”. As Phil Wilson wrote today, it’s as if they are “running through a pool of oatmeal”. Still there are a couple of developments that impact CUE members directly.
Marvin Kaplan confirmed, New NLRB GC Nomination Close
Marvin Kaplan was confirmed to serve on the NLRB and there is actually now a photo of him available on the NLRB website, which may the first photo of the man ever published on the internet. I’m delighted to share it here so that you can recognize him if you ever encounter him an airport or on the streets of Washington D.C.!
Vermont Attorney Peter Robb is close to being named the next general counsel for the National Labor Relations Board, according to a source familiar with the decision.
Robb, a management-side attorney with the firm Downs Rachlin Martin in Brattleboro, Vt., specializes in “defending employers from unfair labor practice charges, age and sex discrimination charges, class action age claims, and wage/hour claims as well as bringing suits against labor organizations,” according to his online biography. He has represented companies in state-level union disputes and before the NLRB.
“With such vast experience and a no-nonsense approach, Peter’s clients look to him for sharp advice, rigorous representation and powerful litigation,” his biography says.
The NLRB general counsel plays the role of prosecutor, investigating and charging companies that may have violated the National Labor Relations Act. Robb is expected to be named to the post pending completion of an FBI background check.
Robb did not respond to requests for comment. He’s slated to replace the current general counsel, Richard Griffin, Jr., an Obama appointee whose four-year term ends Nov. 4, 2017.
As always, we’ll have updates on these developments and other labor issues at the Fall 2017 CUE Conference in Indianapolis, including a great labor law and policy update that will cover current legal developments in labor relations at the federal, state and local level including NLRB changes, joint employer, minimum wage, and work scheduling ordinances, and union organizing. Featured panelists will be Steve Wheeless, John Lovett, and Roger King. Check the full schedule and register here.
In advance of Labor Day, the Economic Policy Institute just released an important piece on the importance of unions as a force to push back on inequality, wage losses and a political system that fails to represent most Americans. I’ll get into some of the key points in a moment, but first there’s a tough contextual point to consider in this discussion.
It’s a labor side report, but it’s worth a read. — Michael