Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) rebuked the president Saturday for making a controversial recess appointment to the National Labor Relations Board.

President Barack Obama used his power to make recess appointments for the first time Saturday by naming 15 nominees to posts within his administration.

McConnell protested Obama’s decision to place Craig Becker, a controversial union lawyer, on the board after Republicans blocked his nomination earlier this year.

"The President's decision to override bipartisan Senate rejection of Craig Becker's nomination is yet another episode of choosing a partisan path despite bipartisan opposition,” McConnell said.

Sens. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) and Blanch Lincoln (D-Ark.) voted with Republicans on Feb. 9 to block Becker’s nomination.

“The President previously held that appointing an individual in this manner meant that the nominee would have ‘less credibility,’ and that assessment certainly fits this nomination,” McConnell said.

Obama also decided to appoint Mark Pearce to the NLRB without congressional approval bet left aside the GOP nominee to the board, Brian Hayes.

“Additionally stunning is the Administration’s decision to recess appoint two Democrat nominees to the NLRB and leave the Republican behind,” McConnell said. “This is a purely partisan move that will make a traditionally bipartisan labor board an unbalanced agenda-driven panel.”

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) defended the action.

“Regrettably, Senate Republicans have dedicated themselves to a failed strategy to cripple President Obama’s economic initiatives by stalling key Administration nominees at every turn,” Reid said in a statement.

“With the recess appointments of these highly-qualified individuals, President Obama has shown that he is serious about getting the right team in place to create jobs and protect the American workforce, and I support his decision,” Reid added.

This post was updated at 7:15 p.m.