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Posted by democracy1st in Political Videos
Wed Feb 03rd 2010, 03:09 AM

Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) humbles John McCain for holding up NLRB nominee Craig Becker
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Craig Becker HELP Hearing Semi-Live Blog


McCain: I want NAMís letters and letters from 600 other organizations included.

McCain: Do you provide support to ACORN?

becker: No, never.

McCain: Did you work with SEIU to obtain representation for home health care workers with Gov Blagojevich?

Becker: I provided counsel to SEIU Local and met with Blagoís staff and once with Blago himself about home health care organizing. My recommendations dealt with technicalities in legislation for organizing these workers.

McCain: They needed your expertise.

Becker: Iíve done this in other states including CA. I have expertise.

McCain: How many cases involving SEIU would you have to recuse yourself?

Becker: Difficult, but SEIU is rarely party to board proceedings.

McCain: What about NUHW cases?

Becker: I have not been involved with that matter.

McCain: But you worked for SEIU

Becker: Yes, but I wasnít involved.

McCain: Would you recuse yourself?

Becker: This is something I considered when looking at the nomination. This led to ethics agreement under which circumstances I would recuse myself in which SEIU is a party for two years. I would consider future questions after those 2 years with the ethics board and recuse myself if necessary.

McCain: Itís not complicated, it reads I would recuse myself after 2 years with SEIU issues. There seems to be several youíd have to recuse yourself often.

Becker: I will abide by that pledge. And if there are other issues that people have I would consider recusing myself if people brought it up.

McCain: Thatís not good enough. If your past employer is involved, you should recuse yourself.

Hatch: Can I submit my questions? I have to leave.

Merkeley asking now. To be honest, softballs about sharing stories. Iím multi taskingÖ.

Becker now talking about the management attorneys who support his nomination.

FRANKEN! Thanks for coming to this unusual, unique hearing. Iím a member of 4 labor unions, donít know how many others are. I appreciate how important this area of the law is.

Most people who are nominated to the NLRB have either represented workers, or management.

Becker: Yes, itís a divided bar.

Franken: Enziís staffer represented management for his entire career. Itís not unusual for someone whoís represented labor to be nominated to the NLRB.

Becker: Correct

Franken: This whole thing about the SEIU, itís happened before. If they represented a firm, they could recuse themselves if a former client appears before the board. Nothing unusual there. You answered some 200 questions, right?

Becker: Yes

Franken: How long did they have to answer the questions?

Becker: I donít know, but thereís been a back and forth since the spring. Whoever had questions had months to submit them to you.

Franken: This is an unusual hearing. Iím new the Senate, but itís unique. Only other board hearing was for a chair. This wasat the insistence of one member who held your nomination. Did that member submit any questions to you?

Becker: No.

Franken: Really. He, or she (ed: McCain) didnít submit any questions over all those months. Huh. /

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