Court puts doubt on Obama’s appointments in recess

“Forget about a century of precedent — go back to the Constitution.”


Ruling could change tradition

Stephen Dinan
The Washington Times

A federal appeals court cast doubt Wednesday not only on President Obama’s controversial January recess appointments but on most such appointments, using oral arguments to question whether presidential powers can ever be used unless Congress has officially adjourned for the end of a year.

If they end up ruling that broadly, it would mark a major break with decades of accepted practice and conceivably would call into question scores of government decisions made by officials appointed under recess powers.

The case stems from Mr. Obama’s Jan. 4 decision to appoint three members to the National Labor Relations Board, making an end run around senators who had been holding up confirmation of the nominees.

Mr. Obama argued that since the full Senate wasn’t meeting regularly, it was technically in an intrasession “recess.” But two judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit questioned that, saying the Constitution could be read to allow such appointments only in the intersession recesses after Congress goes home at the end of each year.

“Once you remove yourself from the principles set forth in the Constitution — intersession versus intrasession — you are adrift,” said Judge Thomas B. Griffith

The article continues at The Washington Times.

Update: These related articles are from RedState:

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