Conrad, David. 1965. . Urbana: University of Illinois Press.
The renamed Labor Law Reform Committee continued to be chaired by Soutar, carrying on the effort initiated in 1965 to bring about changes in labor law and to influence appointments to the National Labor Relations Board. The Construction Users Committee, chaired by an industrial relations lawyer at General Electric, continued the lobbying and legal work started by the Construction Users Anti-Inflation Roundtable. When the March Group was incorporated into the Business Roundtable several months later, it became in effect the Public Information Committee, which continued (without any luck) to try to shape the climate of opinion concerning corporations. These details aside, the Business Roundtable is worthy of mention in an account of the decline of the labor movement because of the anti-union substance of its founding manifesto and its coordinating role in a major anti-union legislative conflict a few years later. The Business Roiundtable was a sign of the times, and of things to come.
Ferguson, Thomas. 1995. . Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
However, organized labor insisted that it could win on a bill that would allow common-situs picketing in the construction industry, a high-level priority for union leaders since the Supreme Court banned such activity as an illegal secondary boycott in 1951. The new legislation included compromises with Ford's secretary of labor, who was a Harvard professor and prominent labor mediator. The two sides agreed on a 10-day notice of union intentions to picket and a 30-day limit on how long the picketing could last. After the bill passed in the House and the liberal-labor alliance overcame a Senate filibuster with a cloture vote, Ford broke his promise to sign the compromise bill due to enormous lobbying pressure from a united corporate community, including the Business Roundtable and the construction industry's trade association. The Secretary of Labor, who had worked for several years to craft a management-labor accord in construction that could tame inflation, resigned shortly after the veto (Greene 1995, pp. 96-98). The defeat did not portend well for unions, but at least it did not involve the loss of an existing right.
Shortly before the House was due to vote, the opponents of the act were momentarily heartened by the unanimous Supreme Court decision on May 27th declaring the National Industrial Recovery Act unconstitutional. They took hope from the fact that the justices said that the act was both an impermissible delegation of congressional power to the president and an overreach on the power that Congress had to regulate commerce, unless there was a direct impact on interstate commerce. Concerned by the substance of the court's ruling in relation to interstate commerce, Wagner asked that the House delay its vote so he could change the preamble to the act in light of the court's argument. It now omitted any appeal to the general welfare clause of the constitution and focused on the fact that the failure of employers to recognize and bargain with unions was a major cause of strikes, which did stop production of goods intended for interstate commerce, and therefore had a very direct effect on the flow of goods beyond single states (Bernstein 1950, pp. 120-122; Cortner 1964, pp. 82-83). The revised bill passed the House by a voice vote and then was supported once again in the Senate.
Hawley, Ellis. 1966. . Princeton: Princeton University Press.
With the LLRG providing the general framework, the corporate leaders hired three seasoned pro-management labor lawyers to draft new legislation for eventual introduction into Congress. One worked as a legislative counselor to General Motors, Chrysler, and General Electric, a second represented Chrysler and General Motors after working on both the Taft-Hartley and Landrum-Griffin acts, and the third was an influential management attorney in Washington. Two had served on the National Labor Relations Board at one time or another. Their work was then checked over by a "Blue Ribbon Committee," which consisted of management lawyers specializing in labor issues at 100 large corporations. The drafting work was also coordinated with the Labor Policy Association -- a meeting ground for hundreds of corporations with labor-law units -- through its president, who was a former lobbyist for several corporations (Gross 1995, p. 202-203). So this was an extensive effort involving a large number of corporations, not the work of a few isolates
Jacoby, Sanford. 1997. . Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Despite these apparent victories in the Supreme Court for the corporate community, the decisions did not go far enough to satisfy even the corporate moderates, who decided to join with ultraconservatives in an attempt to bring about changes in labor law through the legislative process. The outcome of this attempt was not what they originally hoped for, but it did set the stage for victory by another route in the 1970s. It is also important to describe this all-out effort so readers can decide for themselves if the reigning academic school of though on corporate power is right when its leaders say that business was not well organized until the early 1970s and did not really start to win on labor issues until the late 1970s or early 1980s. Put more specifically, political scientists David Vogel (1989) and Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson (2010), along with historian Kim Phillips-Fein (2009) seem to be nearly oblivious to the class conflict that went on in the 1960s at the legislative, regulatory, and factory levels, which was rendered all the more volatile and difficult because white pushback against the integration of neighborhoods, schools, and workplaces was at the same time weakening the unions at the ballot box.