Friday, January 25, 2013

LET'S PLAY "SEE WHAT WE CAN GET AWAY WITH"

Was it that he did not know?

Perhaps he knew, but didn't care.

Maybe he knew but deliberately decided to flaunt his power.

Or maybe this is just part-and-parcel of his character and ideology.

Whatever it was, you'll remember the flack over President BO (the amateur president)'s controversial recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board last year. The administration claimed that Congress was in "recess," therefore the appointments were Constitutional.

The president is only supposed use his power of recess appointment when Congress quits business at the end of a year.


The left insisted that the "recess" was sine diewhich is a legislative term that indicates the end of a long work period.  

President BO (the amateur president) appointed three people to the labor board while the Senate was in session, ignoring the Senate’s “advise and consent” role.


Now, a federal appeals court has overturned his appointments. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled Obama, indeed, ignored the Senate’s “advise and consent” role by appointing those three people to the NLRB.


The court characterized PBO (tap)'s appointments as an abuse of power.


The White House had argued that the Senate was in recess because it was only holding pro forma sessions at the time of the appointments. The White House said the pro forma sessions did not constitute the Senate being in session.

They were either ignorant or they deliberately acted contrary to the law.

If they were ignorant, they further confirm the contention that this administration is amateurish in its actions.

If they were deliberately acting contrary to the law, their moral character and their competence to lead the country must be called into question.

There are a couple of places where you can learn more about the ruling: HERE and HERE.

This president continually exceeds his reach of power with policy decisions made by "executive order."

Executive Orders ARE Constitutional, as long as they do not violate other parts of the Constitution.

President BO (the amateur president) places no such restrictions on himself.

19 comments:

Ducky's here said...

Could go both ways.

Recess appointments are nothing new. As the country becomes more and more divided and antagonistic, "advise and consent" has come to mean "my way or the highway". This is especially nasty when the is suspicious of anyone to the left of Michele Bachmann (why, Craig, why?).

It's not surprising that Obama would have to use recess appointments, a long standing feature of our process, in that hostile environment. Even though history will show us that Obama is in fact a centrist.

The maneuver by the fringe right was questionable and an objective view of the matter could just as easily point to McConnell and his cheap rules stunt as the abuse.

So what now? Obama nominates them again, McConnell (R- Put in your teeth, Mitch) tries the filibuster and for once Obama tells right to real with that crap and grow a spine.

Careful what you wish for, Joe.

Craig said...

(why, Craig, why?)

We like sending comedians to congress. One made his living making people laugh. The other makes her living as a laughing stock.

Joe said...

Ducky: "Recess appointments are nothing new."

According to the federal appeals court, there was no recess, therefore the appointment was illegal.

If I understand you correctly, an abuse of power is OK.

Craig: Is your comment related to this post?

Ducky's here said...

If I understand you correctly, an abuse of power is OK.

-----
No Joe, you clearly don't understand at all or else you are trying to play Mickey the Dunce.

Recess appointments have been standard procedure for many years.
However, McConnell utilized a marginal procedural trick in order to assure the president had no appointment powers.

A cheap stunt. Yes there was an abuse of power but an abuse BY McCONNELL. And you are just fine with anything the fringe right does.
Your blind hatred for Obama has blinded you to the fact that the right wing in America is driving over a cliff and we will soon be rid of its reactionaries.

Xavier Onassis said...

The President knew exactly what he was doing when he made those appointments and this will wind up before the Supreme Court.

The question isn't whether the President has the power to make appointments when Congress is in recess. Clearly he does and Presidents have been doing so since about 1820.

The real question is whether or not Congress was actually in session or in recess.

The Republicans have been employing a tricksey little procedure called a "pro forma session" specifically to prevent the President from exercising his power to make recess appointments.

It works like this (the following is from answers.com).

"The Constitution says that neither the Senate nor the House may adjourn for more than three days without the other's consent (Article 1, Section 5). This requirement prevents either house from trying to delay legislation by refusing to meet. Rather than always having to ask the other body's permission not to meet, the Senate or House simply holds a pro forma session in which one member gavels the chamber to order and then immediately declares it adjourned. Regardless of how briefly this session lasts, it counts as a day's session."

So during what actually was a recess when no members of Congress were in Washington and available to debate or vote...they were all back in their home districts...one unlucky member of the House is assigned the task of walking up to the podium, gavel the House to order (even though he's the only one there), and then declares the session adjourned without any business taking place.

Their thinking is, as long as they have someone to do this every 3 days, Congress is never recessed even though they are totally recessed.

So what the SCOTUS will have to decide is whether a "pro forma session" that only lasts for a few seconds with one member present actually constitutes a "Congress in Session".

The problem is, the SCOTUS can only decide Constitutional matters and I'm not sure this applies. I don't recall the Constitution having a lot of specificity around the definition of a Congressional Session.

Congress can pretty much make their own rules and I don't know that the Judiciary has the power to change or negate them.

If the Constitution requires a quorum to be present in order for Congress to be in session, then pro forma sessions are unconstitutional and the President wins.

If the Constitution doesn't get down to the "Robert's Rules of Order" level, then the President looses.

This will be interesting to watch. My guess is that this decision will get tossed by the SCOTUS and the President will win.

Ducky's here said...

@XO -So what the SCOTUS will have to decide is whether a "pro forma session" that only lasts for a few seconds with one member present actually constitutes a "Congress in Session".
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I would have expected a quorum to be necessary to be considered "in session".

A single member sitting in his office seems like SCOTUS material to me also.

Fredd said...

Obama is a slimy, unethical lawyer (yes, that's much akin to a fat sumo wrestler). He will parse words until the cows come home, and that's what he did here.

And will continue to do so until he is stopped.

Xavier Onassis said...

Ducky - I don't have the entire Constitution memorized and I don't have time to research it. But I'd be very surprised if the Constitution went in to any detail on the minimum requirements for a "Session of Congress".

Perhaps Jo Joe can enlighten us. He fancies himself as The Supreme Arbiter (even over the Supreme Court)of what is and isn't Constitutional.

Perhaps he can enlighten us with Article and Clause.

Ducky's here said...

May we remind Fredd to attempt rational thought.

The D.C. Circuit’s conclusion conflicts with the Eleventh Circuit, the en banc Ninth Circuit, and the Second Circuit on much of this ruling.

Ranting about Obama when we have a subtle matter of law does not help the right's image.

Ducky's here said...

Joe, I read the link you posted from The Hill (I admit I won't waste my time with the Washington Times) and what I read is the story of Republicans doing everything in their power to keep the board free of any pro union sentiment.

Now using questionable maneuvers to impose the will of the minority to thwart legitimate presidential prerogative seems to put the abuse with the Senate republicans, no?

Kithogan said...

Fredd said...

Obama is a slimy, unethical lawyer (yes, that's much akin to a fat sumo wrestler). He will parse words until the cows come home, and that's what he did here.

And will continue to do so until he is stopped.


As Will I

Kithogan said...

Lei's play misdirection! That's what Obama has been playing for the past 4 years, whenever he gets in "Hot Water" he creates something new to get into the headlines.

By the way, do you think that Madam Hillary aka the PIAPS would have acted that way if Obama lost the election and a Republican president was elected? You can bet not, she acted as if she was the victim and she went on the offense. Way to go Ms Secretary of Lying.

Joe said...

XO: "The real question is whether or not Congress was actually in session or in recess.
"The Republicans have been employing a tricksey little procedure called a "pro forma session"

That's exactly what the court (not the Republicans) said.

Democrats insisted that the "recess" was sine die, the Republicans said it was pro forma.

The court agreed with the Republicans.

We'll see what the Supreme Court says.

Joe said...

Kithogan: Misdirection is the specialty of the left.

Joe said...

Fredd: I can see the slime dripping off of him. It's in his eyes and his body language.

Ducky's here said...

Joe, the court overturned several relatively contemporary rulings and overturned nearly 200 years of precedent in sections of their opinion.

Why don't you consider them activist judges?

Joe said...

Ducky: Only 3 times in US history has a president made appointments when the Congress was on a break. According to the court (and the Constitution), a break is not a recess. A recess occurs at the end of a SESSION of Congress; that is: when it recesses for the year. After that, the next time it convenes it is a new congress.

It is PERFECTLY PROPER for a president to make appointments during a recess. It is totally INAPPROPRIATE for a president to make appointments during a break.

That is what the court recognized.

The Question Man said...

Look Jo-Joe old chap, the majority of Americans don’t agree with you. Keep preaching to YOUR choir, keep up the Obama is evil nonsense, and keep deflecting blame from your party’s message, it will only further drive the party to the right, and cause the inevitable future failures of the Republican Party. They blame everyone but themselves. They blame Obama's victory on election fraud. They even blame two hurricanes on Obama winning, but if that’s true then it was an Act of God that re-elected the president in a landslide after you called his re-election as wrongly as any of the other “experts.” You have zero credibility. Zero.

Joe said...

TQM: "They even blame two hurricanes on Obama winning..."

There's something wrong with you. I never blamed Obama for a storm of any kind.

He HAS ignored those who were hit by the last one. That, after telling us how great he was going to be at helping them.

And I never predicted who would win the election.

He's a Chicago thug and a fraud.

And yo helped elect him and are thus complicit with him.