Santorum to visit Boeing plant in SC

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum will visit the Boeing's plant in Charleston, S.C., that was the focus of the National Labor Relations Board's complaint against the company, which in turn sparked a national debate regarding government involvement in the free market.

Santorum's campaign confirmed to The Hill Wednesday that the candidate will tour the airplane manufacturer's plant in Charleston Thursday morning during a swing through the city that will also find him speaking before the Southern Republican Leadership Council.

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Boeing opened its plant in Charleston, which is intended to build 787 Dreamliner airplanes, last summer. But before the plant opened, the NLRB initiated a legal complaint against the company alleging Boeing chose to build the plan in South Carolina, which is a right-to-work state, in retaliation for strikes by unionized workers at existing Boeing plants in Washington state. 

The NLRB has since dropped the complaint against Boeing, but with South Carolina holding the third primary in the race for the Republican nomination Saturday, the NLRB's case against Boeing remained an issue in the presidential contest.  

Santorum has criticized President Obama for making recess appointments to the NLRB, saying while campaigning in New Hampshire that "we don't want the NLRB to be filled with a bunch of cronies who work for the labor unions," according to published reports.