In a media conference call this morning, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) came out with both guns blazing against the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for trying to block Boeing from opening a new plant in South Carolina. NLRB Acting General Counsel Lafe Solomon took the position that building the plant in right-to-work South Carolina rather than expanding an existing plant in unionized Washington amounted to illegally retaliating against union workers. (Boeing executives cited the union workers’ past strike activity as a factor in their decision.)
DeMint blasted Solomon as someone who “has not been confirmed and could not be confirmed” by the Senate.” He accused the Obama administration of “stack[ing]” the NLRB with union advocates and propping up unions. He decried the use of “bogus” and “anti-American and anti-democratic” tactics that “threaten jobs,” including the 1,000 he estimated were at stake in South Carolina. “I’m having trouble raising my level of rhetoric to match the absurdity of what’s going on,” DeMint said.
“If the president really believes Boeing broke the law,” DeMint said, “he needs to ask [White House chief of staff Bill] Daley, who was on the board of Boeing at the time, to take a leave of absence.” DeMint argued that Solomon’s logic will ultimately hurt “forced unionization” states because companies will be able to relocate there if they fear they’ll run afoul of the NLRB if they later expand into right-to-work states. Businesses will conclude it is safer to set up shop in right-to-work states from the start.
The senator was also critical of the administration’s support for unionizing airport security workers, saying experts believe the resulting standardization “diminishes security and the ability to respond to the changing methods of terrorists.” The call organized by the Workforce Fairness Institute.
UPDATE: IBD‘s Sean Higgins has a report on right-to-work Senate Democrats siding with unions and the NLRB.