National Labor Relations Board v. Raytheon Company

PETITIONER: National Labor Relations Board
RESPONDENT: Raytheon Company
LOCATION: Riverbed of the Arkansas River

DOCKET NO.: 440
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1969-1970)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

CITATION: 398 US 25 (1970)
ARGUED: Feb 26, 1970
DECIDED: May 18, 1970

Facts of the case

Question

Media for National Labor Relations Board v. Raytheon Company

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - February 26, 1970 in National Labor Relations Board v. Raytheon Company

Warren E. Burger:

Number 448, the National Labor Relations Board against Raytheon Company.

Richard G. Kleindienst:

Mr. Chief Justice, and the Court please.

Warren E. Burger:

Mr. Kleindiesnt, you may proceed.

Richard G. Kleindienst:

This case comes of the Court on certiorari to the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

It raises a specific but in the opinion of the Government a very important issue as to the administration of the National Labor Relations Act and it presents the precise question of whether on the eve up or at other about the time of a representation of election under the Act.

The employer engages in unfair labor practice activity.

Whether such unfair labor practice activity is rendered moot and therefore now susceptible to an enforcing order from the Court of Appeals by virtue of a subsequent representation election which the union lost that came after the unfair labor practice activity.

The facts in the case, I think are likewise rather direct and not controversial.

The union in the case began its organizational activities among the employees in the fall of 1964 on the eve of the representation election a few days before representatives of the company engaged in conduct which subsequently as I will outline was determined to be in violation of the Act.

And election was held, the union lost the election.

The union petition to have the election set aside and at the same time, filed unfair labor practice, filed a complaint with the Board and the charge with the Board, and the Board subsequently filed this complaint.

Thereafter, the Board heard the evidence with the respect to alleged unfair labor practice activity and issued its order against the employer to the cease-and-desist in the conduct.

Following the order of the Board, a second election was held.

Again, which the union lost, and that election was set aside for reasons that are not material here and do not appear in this record.

After the second election, the Board petitioned the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for an order in forcing its order against the respondent company.

And after that petition to the Court of Appeals, a third election was held.

And again, the union lost the election but at this time, there was no objections filed by the union or the employees with respect to the conduct of the election, and the Board certified the election as be invalid.

Warren E. Burger:

Does the record show Mr. Kleindienst whether the union's votes increased or decreased?

What happened in this successive election?

Richard G. Kleindienst:

I believe my recollection of record is that the union's votes decreased.

Warren E. Burger:

Decreased?

Richard G. Kleindienst:

Yeah, that the union's position became stronger in the situation that I -- it's in the record here but that's my recollection of it.

I don't believe that that's material one way or another to the determination of this issue, Mr. Chief Justice.

Warren E. Burger:

Well, if their votes -- if their total ballot decreased as each election went on it might suggest some relationship between the companies the continuing impact, the continuing effect of the companies at a union activities would it not?

Richard G. Kleindienst:

That could possibly be it but I think --

Warren E. Burger:

At least it's an arguable connection?

Richard G. Kleindienst:

Possibly but there's so many other factors that could occur, turnover employees, other conduct the issues raised in the election.

I would say that you almost have to have precise evidence so the point like that Mr. Chief Justice before that would be a supportable inference all by itself from just a mere of fact if the votes went up or down, one way or another.

Now, that would be my opinion in this regard.

When the case --