Tate Zeigler (202-224-5972) or Kevin Bishop (864-250-1417)
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) is calling for a congressional investigation into collaboration between the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) union against The Boeing Company’s decision to build a second 787 Dreamliner production facility in North Charleston, South Carolina.
Graham’s announcement comes after the NLRB announced it will drop its complaint against Boeing.
Graham also reaffirmed today he will continue to place an indefinite Senate hold on nominations to the NLRB Board. Beginning in January 2012, the NLRB will have just two members. The Supreme Court last year ruled that an agency board with just two members lacks the authority to issue case rulings.
NLRB Dropping Case against Boeing:
“For the sake of the Boeing South Carolina workers, I’m pleased to hear the frivolous complaint that has put a cloud over their operations has been lifted. However, it’s hard to celebrate an event which never should have happened.”
Congressional Probe into Possible NLRB-Union Collaboration against Boeing:
“I have real concerns the NLRB complaint was used as a negotiating tool against Boeing. It would be completely unacceptable for the NLRB, which is supposed to be an independent arbiter, to be used and help in the union’s bidding.
“If this turns out to be the case, the NLRB would have abandoned its role as an agency that arbitrates disputes and become an advocacy group for union causes. And few things would do more damage to job creation than having a government agency abuse its power and unfairly alter sound decisions made by business.
“I find the whole episode between the Machinists union and the NLRB against Boeing highly suspicious. We have already seen NLRB communications, made available by a Freedom of Information Act, which shows the NLRB had a callous and negative attitude against Boeing’s decision to open a South Carolina facility.
“A congressional investigation to answer questions about the NLRB’s role, attitude, and relationship with the parties is definitely warranted. I would urge the appropriate Senate committees to look closely into this matter. If the Senate refuses to act, I would strongly encourage the House of Representatives to move forward.
“I’m glad the ridiculous complaint against Boeing has gone away, but there are disturbing questions about possible collaboration between the Machinists union and the NLRB against Boeing. These questions must be answered.”
Indefinite Hold Against Obama Nominees to the NLRB:
“I will continue to block all nominations to the NLRB until we get satisfactory answers regarding their role in this entire saga. Given its recent actions, the NLRB as inoperable could be considered progress.”