One of Two Republican NLRB Board Members Resigns

One of two Republican members of the five-person National Labor Relations Board resigned over the Memorial Day weekend after it was alleged that he had leaked information about the agency to a former Mitt Romney campaign adviser.

According to Politico:

Terence Flynn — a Republican appointed by President Barack Obama in January to the board — submitted his resignation letter on May 26, according to a NLRB statement. NLRB inspector general reports this year accused Flynn of revealing non-public information about the board while he served as its top lawyer and found that he allegedly leaked draft reports and memos to former Romney campaign adviser Peter Schaumber.

Little real impact on the NLRB

The New York Times added that Flynn had allegedly leaked “drafts of board decisions and details of internal (NLRB) deliberations to … Schaumber, a former labor board chairman who had been co-chairman of Mitt Romney’s labor advisory committee.”

Flynn’s resignation is likely to have little real impact on the NLRB. As one of two Republican members on the five-member board, Flynn and fellow Republican Board member Brian Hayes were frequently outvoted by the Democrats’ three-person majority.

As the Huffington Post noted,

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Flynn is one of five members of the board, which oversees union elections and enforces labor laws. It has been the focus of intense partisan wrangling, with Republicans and business groups complaining that it leans too heavily in favor of labor unions.

Obama bypassed the Senate to appoint Flynn and two Democratic nominees to the board in January. Republicans had filibustered the nominations for months.”

The NLRB has been involved in a number of controversial decisions in the past few years, most recently over requiring posters in workplaces that described union rights, and, for issuing rules making it easier for labor unions to conduct organizing elections in the workplace. Both decisions are currently on hold pending legal challenges.

The lone remaining Republican on the Board is Brian Hayes. Democrats include Chair Mark Pearce, Sharon Block and Richard Griffin.

John Hollon is Editor-at-Large at ERE Media and was the founding Editor of TLNT.com. A longtime newspaper, magazine, and business journal editor, John has deep roots in the talent management space. He's the former Editor of Workforce Management magazine and workforce.com, served as Editor of RecruitingDaily, and was Vice President for Content at HR technology firm Checkster. An award-winning journalist, John has written extensively about HR, talent management, leadership, and smart business practices, including for the popular Fistful of Talent blog. Contact him at johnhollon@ere.net, connect with him on LinkedIn, or follow him on Twitter @johnhollon.

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