President Obama could be playing with fire.

Last week the president nominated Richard Griffin Jr. to be general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Griffin, a Democrat and former union lawyer, was one of Obama’s controversial recess appointments.

In January 2012, Obama installed Griffin and two other individuals to the board through recess appointments. Three appeals courts have ruled that the appointments were unconstitutional because the Senate wasn’t officially in recess. The matter is currently under Supreme Court review. Obama withdrew Griffin’s board nomination last month and is now throwing his name into the hat for the top spot at the NLRB.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Griffin’s Senate confirmation might be rocky, as a senior Democratic leadership aide told the paper that Republicans have vowed not to hold up the confirmation.

Should Griffin become GC, he would replace Lafe Solomon, who has been the NLRB’s Acting GC since June 2010. The role includes responsibilities such as overseeing union elections and private-sector management-labor disputes. The GC also decides when to investigate and prosecute companies charged with unfair labor practices.

For more NLRB news from InsideCounsel, read: 

Cheat Sheet: A guide to the NLRB recess appointment controversy

4th Circuit invalidates NLRB poster rule

Labor board in limbo

3rd Circuit rules 2010 Obama recess appointment invalid

D.C. Circuit invalidates NLRB posting requirement

SuperConference panel discusses the state of labor in the age of Obama

Labor: The NLRB will not be ignored