Companies would have less time and opportunity to block unions under a proposed U.S. rule that would speed voting in labor elections.

The proposed rule issued today by the National Labor Relations Board, an agency that investigates unfair labor practices, would bring changes sought by unions, such as faster hearing deadlines and streamlined procedures.

The push for quicker elections is a victory for unions after defeats at the hands of Republican governors seeking to curb public-employee unions. It's also a sign of the NLRB's pro- labor bent since President Barack Obama's appointees have become a majority, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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