By: John J. Toner, Esq.
The Republican and Democratic leadership in the United State Senate earlier today reached a last minute compromise allowing them to avert Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s threatened change in Senate rules regarding filibusters of Presidential nominees. As part of the compromise, the Administration agreed to withdraw two of its former NLRB nominees — Sharon Block and Richard Griffin. They both are currently serving as Members of the NLRB based on recess appointments by President Obama–but the legitimacy of those appointments is being challenged in an appeal pending before the Supreme Court. The Administration now intends to nominate former AFL-CIO associate general counsel Nancy Schiffer and current chief counsel to Chairman Pearce, Kent Hirozawa, to replace the nominations of Block and Griffin. The Senate is expected to vote on the confirmations of Schiffer and Hirozawa as well as the still pending NLRB nominations of Harry Johnson, Philip A. Miscimarra (a former Seyfarth partner) and current NLRB Chairman Mark Pearce by the end of the month.