Fresh off his controversial decision to challenge Boeing for deciding to locate a new manufacturing facility in South Carolina instead of utilizing its existing unionized workforce in Washington, the NLRB’s Acting General Counsel Lafe Solomon has announced a federal lawsuit against Arizona. At issue is an amendment to the state’s constitution that Arizona voters approved only last November. The complaint asks the court to issue a declaration that the Arizona law is unconstitutional.
The complaint (pdf) filed in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona alleges that the state law "guarantees" a secret ballot vote in a union election. The NLRA, however, does not require a secret ballot vote in order for an employer to recognize a union. For example, an employer may chose to voluntarily recognize a union if the union can demonstrate support from a majority of employees. Therefore, reasons the AGC’s complaint, the state law conflicts with federal law and it is preempted by the supremacy clause of the U.S. Constitution.
South Dakota is apparently the AGC’s next target. Two other states that passed similar laws, South Carolina (as noted above, where Boeing located its new airplane manufacturing operation) and Utah, are mentioned in the press release as well. The AGC has "reserved the right" to sue them, but the press release announces no specific plans to do so anytime soon.