On Sept. 2, the National Review posted on its website an Op-Ed blasting a new rule requiring companies to inform employees of their union rights. The article condemned the rule as “an unwarranted usurpation” and “regulatory sorcery” that “diminishes” the National Labor Relations Board. None of this was particularly interesting or surprising, given the conservative politics of the National Review and the article’s author, Peter Schaumber, a former NLRB chairman who’s now advising Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign.
More scintillating than the article itself is the story of its genesis, which was laid out in a report from the NLRB inspector general this week. According to the report, it appears the article was edited by current NLRB member Terence Flynn, who served as chief counsel to Schaumber when he sat on the board. The Op-Ed “appears to be a further revised version” of a file found on Flynn’s government-issued computer, complete with tracked-changes edits marked as Flynn’s. And the IG says Flynn wasn’t just providing Schaumber with freelance editing: he is also accused of violating ethics rules by leaking to Schaumber and other conservatives internal info from the agency they were out to obstruct.