I have tried resyncing the remotes and have done so successfully. Once I get to the screen after pairing the remotes to the Wii menu I can go through all of the options with the Wii remotes until the last screen which has a Wii Menu button at the top of the screen -- the text: "Use the Wii remote to select Wii menu." and then has a cancel button at the bottom. Remote 1 (nor any for that matter) will give the active pointer on the screen to allow me to select the Wii Menu button, nor will the A button work. However, the Remote will allow me to hit the Cancel button (B) and will the return to the main Wii U menu.
More info: the Wii remotes that I am trying to use are those that have "Wii motion plus inside" listed at the bottom.