Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

Craig Becker, “Labor’s Secret Weapon”

The Wall Street Journal has an editorial profiling Craig Becker, President Obama’s appointment to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Becker is currently the associate general counsel for the SEIU. There’s  little doubt where Becker’s views on union organizing lie. But for good measure, the Journal highlighted some of his previous writings to gauge his thoughts.

In a Minnesota Law Review article, Becker argued that the traditional aspects of democracy are not applicable to union elections. Becker wrote that employers should not be allowed to attend NLRB hearings or challenge election results even if there is union misconduct. Even more amazing is Becker’s support for a new set of organizing rules that would limit the ability of employers to argue against unionizing the workplace. Any company meeting, Becker asserts, that involves the so-called captive audience is sufficient reason for overturning an election. And Becker argues that if an employer wants to distribute flyers opposing unionization, they must allow unions access to private property to perform the same task.

In short, Becker is unabashedly pro-labor. His appointment to the NLRB, pending Senate confirmation, should raise concerns about why an individual, as the Journal put it, “who wants to rig the rules to favor unionization should sit on a panel that is supposed to enforce fairness in union elections.”

Categories: Center for Union FactsEFACNewsSEIU