The Senate, by a vote of 49-47, confirmed the appointment of William Emanuel to the NLRB on September 25, 2017, giving the NLRB its first Republican majority since 2007. Emanuel, along with Marvin Kaplan, join Chairman Miscimarra to form a NLRB majority that is likely to begin reversing the direction the NLRB took during the Obama Administration.
Emanuel is a former management-side attorney in Los Angeles, and it is widely expected that he will interpret labor issues from the management-side perspective, accounting for business realities and other employer considerations that were previously cast aside by the NLRB.
Though Emanuel finally gives the NLRB a Republican majority, it is unclear how quickly the NLRB will move to turn back the pro-union decisions that have been issued in the last decade. Chairman Miscimarra has announced that he will retire when his term ends on December 16, 2017, which means the Republican majority will only last for roughly two and a half months before Miscimarra’s vacancy causes the appointment and confirmation process to begin all over again.
With such limited time for the Republican majority to issue decisions, we may not see major movement in NLRB precedents until well into 2018 once a more permanent trio of Republicans are in place.