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Obama Nominates Republican Terence Flynn to U.S. Labor Board

President Barack Obama nominated Terence Flynn, a Republican, to the National Labor Relations Board, filling an open slot on the five-member agency that handles disputes between unions and companies.

Flynn is currently chief counsel to the one Republican member of the labor board, according to a statement from the White House today. Three Democrats are currently on the board.

The majority of members of the NLRB, which remedies unfair labor practices and certifies union elections, is typically from a president’s political party. Flynn would join Republican Brian Hayes on the board and fill a slot that was opened when Republican Peter Schaumber’s term expired in August.

The NLRB’s three Democrats have signaled they plan to act in coming months to broaden union rights. Last month, the board’s acting general counsel said in a memo that unfair labor practices are “severe” during organizing campaigns. He said he would put a priority on protecting employee freedom of choice with regard to unionization.

The board last month proposed a rule that would force companies to post notices informing workers of their right to join a union.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers and other business groups last year failed to kill Obama’s nomination of union lawyer Craig Becker to the board. They have said that Becker, who formerly represented the AFL-CIO and Service Employees International Union, will unfairly favor unions over companies in crafting labor policy.

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