President Nominates and Senate Confirms Democrat to Fill NLRB Vacancy
The Senate confirmed the appointment of Democrat Lauren McFerran to the National Labor Relations Board (“Board”). The Board is made up of five individuals appointed by the President with Senate consent, each for a five year term, with one Board Member’s term expiring each year. McFerran replaces former Board Member Nancy J. Schiffer (D) whose term expired December 16, 2014.
Schiffer had been serving since August 2, 2013, when the recess appointment of Sharon Block, who had been serving since a January 2012 recess appointment by the President was deemed unconstitutional. President Obama initially attempted to appoint Block as Schiffer’s replacement, but due to strong Republican opposition, nominated McFerran.
McFerran’s appointment is not expected to cause any major changes to the Board since the Board retains its Democratic majority. Further, due to McFerran’s background, many believe she will have a pro-labor stance similar to that of the Board Member she replaces. Prior to her appointment, McFerran served as Chief Labor Counsel for the Committee and prior to that, served as Senior Labor Counsel for Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) and former Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA). Before that, she represented labor organizations as an attorney in private practice in Washington, D.C.
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