The Chicago company called the NLRB's complaint "legally frivolous" and a "radical departure" from precedents. It said it will fight the complaint, which was sought by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers union.Boeing [NYSE: BA] had been plagued by strikes and work stoppages in recent years at it's facilities in Everett, WA. The Washington state Boeing plant was represented by Local 751 of the Internationa Association of Machinists, which brought an unfair labor practices grievance against Boeing before the NLRB in March 2010. The complaint alleges that Boeing was using the Charleston, SC plant to threaten IAM workers if the opted to go on strike.
The NLRB's action comes amid a broad conflict over the role of unions in the economy. Unions have responded to setbacks in the 2010 elections, which put Republicans in charge of the U.S. House of Representatives and in state houses around the country, by pressing the Obama administration and the majority Democrat NLRB to favor union positions.
Boeing acquired the South Carolina facility from troubled supplier Vought in July 2009, reportedly citing the risk of strike among the reasons for the 2nd facility in South Carolina. However, Boeing has also recently expanded production in the Puget Sound area.
From all outward appearences, this appears to be the unions using a NLRB stacked with pro Big Labor appointees to do an end-run around right to work states like Souht Carolina or Texas. Boeing has announced that they plan on fighting the ruling.
Exit question: if the NRLB decides to insert itself into a company's decision on where to set up shop, then what really is there to prevent it from imposing Card Check on individual businesses?