- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 22, 2011

South Carolina Republican Rep. Tim Scott said Wednesday the complaints of organized labor over the opening of a $750 million non-union Boeing airline assembly plant in South Carolina were “ludicrous.”

The National Labor Relations Board has filed suit claiming the aerospace giant opened the plant in right-to-work South Carolina to punish unions in its manufacturing base of Washington state.

The case has become a flashpoint between the NLRB, now dominated by appointees of President Obama, and the business community.

“If someone was punished, at least one — one — union worker should have lost their job. But not a single union worker in Puget Sound, Washington state, has lost a job because of the opening of the [South Carolina] plant. They’ve actually had to hire another 2,000 employees,” the freshman Republican said Wednesday on The Washington Times-affiliated “America’s Morning News” radio program.

The dispute, the congressman said, boils down to “whether or not we are going to allow our economy to recover by letting the private sector … create jobs vs. having the government do what the government has done for the last 24 months, which is to tell industry they really don’t want jobs unless they get the right jobs in the right place in the right way. That is a jobs-blocking agenda that seems to emanate from the White House.”

House Republicans held a field hearing in North Charleston, S.C. last week to highlight what they said was regulatory overreach in the NLRB’s action. Top Democrats in Congress, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, have accused GOP lawmakers of improperly trying to influence the case before the agency.

• David Eldridge can be reached at deldridge@washingtontimes.com.

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