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The Washington Times - Federal Labor Board Faces Double-Edged Decision

News Article

Location: North Charleston, SC

By Tim Devaney
The Washington Times

The National Labor Relations Board's bid to prevent Boeing from moving to South Carolina could harm the very state it is trying to protect by discouraging businesses from setting up shop there, Republican lawmakers warn.

A Washington state union has persuaded the NLRB to fight to bring work back from the plant that Boeing Co., the worlds largest aerospace manufacturer, has built here.

But a victory for the labor board would create an unfriendly business environment and stifle economic growth in Washington state and across the country, Republicans say, and the uncertainty eventually could force American companies to do business overseas.

"New businesses won't want to locate in union states, because the same thing that is happening to Boeing will happen to them," Rep. Blake Farenthold, Texas Republican, said at a congressional field hearing. "It creates the impression that we dont want to start up in those states, because once we grow up were stuck."

This is shaping up to be one of the biggest labor disputes for the Obama administration. The NLRB filed its complaint against Boeing on April 20, charging unfair labor practices, and the court case started Tuesday in Seattle.


"The last thing we need are signals to the largest job creators in America that they should run those jobs to another country," said Rep. Tim Scott, a South Carolina Republican who was at the hearing and represents the area where the factory is located.

"Make no mistake: It is truly about whether we want American businesses doing business in America," he said. "Or do we want to send more work to China?"

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