Scott Brown's first major vote in the United States Senate made a clear statement about the importance of workplace fairness and economic growth.
Senator Brown joined Republicans and two Democrats last night in halting the nomination of labor-union lawyer Craig Becker to the National Labor Relations Board. The vote was 52-33, well short of the 60 senators needed to break a Republican filibuster of the nomination.
AIM asked Senator Brown on Monday to oppose the Becker nomination. The association believed that Mr. Becker, Associate General Counsel of the Service Employees International Union, would seek to impose administratively several troublesome elements of the Employee Free Choice Act, including one that would deprive workers of a secret ballot in union elections.
"Massachusetts employers applaud Senator Brown for a principled vote on a difficult issue. We appreciate his recognition of the fact that the best way to create opportunity for workers is to jump-start economic growth," said Richard C. Lord, President and Chief Executive Officer of AIM.
Senator Brown issued a statement following the vote:
"My first priority in coming to Washington is to create jobs and put people back to work. Craig Becker's theories about how the workplace should function, if ever put into practice, would impose new burdens on employers, hurt job creation, and slow down the recovery.''
The Employee Free Choice Act remains pending in the Congress. Employers throughout the country have labored furiously against the measure and remain uncertain about its prospects. My AIM colleague Kyle Pardo recently published a good summary of the bill.