Under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and subsequent amendments and revamps such as the Taft-Hartley Law, union organizers collect signatures on cards from workers at a company, which they can then submit to the owner to certify the union or send  to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRF) to certify them for a union vote by secret ballot.

Under terms of the now-dead Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), the labor organizing laws would’ve been changed to allow the NLRB to certify a union based solely on the collection of signed cards from a majority of a company’s employees.

Four states–Arizona, Utah, South Carolin, and South Dakota–reacted to the specter of EFCA by passing legislation requiring a secret-ballot vote for all union organizing efforts.

The NLRB, claiming superiority of federal labor statutes over state laws, is now threatening to sue the four states to overturn their legislation.

Speculation further abounds that the NLRB will use its regulatory and review authority to establish the EFCA’s card-check provision without a Congressional vote. If that happens, there could be some interesting court fights between each of these four states and the NLRB.