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Obama names 3 to labor board

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WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama has nominated three candidates for full terms on the National Labor Relations Board, which has been in limbo since a federal appeals court invalidated his recess appointments to the agency.

Obama urged the Senate to move swiftly in confirming the members — two Republicans and one Democrat — along with two other Democrats he nominated in February. That would fill all five seats on the board.

But the move is already facing opposition from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who remains angry that the nominee package includes the two Democratic lawyers Obama installed last year without Senate confirmation.

The board has been a partisan lightning rod during Obama’s presidency, with Republican lawmakers and business groups furious over decisions and rules they say are aimed at helping labor unions win more members.

Obama is renominating board Chairman Mark Pearce, a Democrat, and nominating two new Republicans to the board: lawyers Harry I. Johnson III and Philip A. Miscimarra, who have represented companies in labor-management disputes.

The president also had nominated Democrats Sharon Block and Richard Griffin to full terms on the board in February. They have been sitting on the board since January 2012, when Obama made them recess appointments after Senate Republicans vowed to block Obama’s NLRB nominees.
— This article appeared on page B01 of the Albuquerque Journal

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