William Emanuel Confirmed, Creating First Republican Controlled NLRB in Years

  • September 26, 2017

Wiliam Emanual, a long-time Littler attorney from Los Angeles, was confirmed to fill the fifth and final seat on the National Labor Relations

Board (NLRB)  yesterday, giving the Republicans majority control of the NLRB for the first time in more than a decade.  THe Senate confirmed Emanuel by a vote of 49-47.

The NLRB is an independent federal agency which oversees labor policy in the private sector, including conducting union elections and many other duties.  During the Obama administration, business leaders often criticized the NLRB for setting an overly aggressive agenda that favored labor unions.

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said a new majority on the board would reverse Obama-era policies; “a new majority on the NLRB can begin to undo this severe damage and restore the board’s neutrality.”  

Under the leadership of Chair Phil Miscimarra, the new Board is expected to tackle some key issues in the days to come, including:

  • Quickie Election Rule
  • Specialty Healthcare (Community of Interest Standard)
  • Joint Employer
  • Email
  • Employee Handbooks
  • Privacy – Confidentiality
  • Class Action Waiver
  • Graduate Assistant, College Student-Athlete Jurisdiction
  • Management Rights
  • Successor Employer
  • Definition of Supervisor
  • Replacement Workers
  • Dues Obligation Post-Contract

Patrick Brady at SHRM points out that unfortunately, this new reality will be short-lived as Chair Philip Miscimarra has notified President Trump that he will not seek a second term when his current term expires in December. Patrick also notes that reports have suggested that President Trump is considering John Ring as a possible replacement for Miscimarra.

Earlier this month, President Trump nominated Peter Robb to be the board’s next general counsel. At the moment, it’s unclear when the Senate HELP Committee will hold its hearing for Mr. Robb.