With the unprecedented power grab he made this week, President Obama is ignoring the Constitution and acting as though he is a monarch or a third world dictator. His appointments of three members to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), and the Director of the newly established Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) are not constitutional, and the appointment of the D/CFPB defies the language of the law that established the CFPB.
Obama claims these are recess appointments; appointments made while Congress is not in session, and authorized under Article 2, Section 2 of the Constitution “The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate…”
The problem is the Senate is not in recess. Under Article 1, Section 5 of the Constitution, “Neither House of Congress can adjourn for more than 3 days without the consent of the other House.” The House of Representatives has not consented to Senate adjournment.
Furthermore, the same Section empowers both houses of Congress to determine their own rules, and the Senate established a rule under Senator Reid’s leadership, to operate in a “proforma session”. The Senate is currently operating under such a proforma session, and is not in recess even though most members are not in town.
This proforma session rule was devised by Democrats including Senator Obama, as a tactic to prevent President Bush from making recess appointments. Bush recognized the authority of the Senate to operate in this manner, and as a result many of his appointments were blocked by Democrats using this tactic. President Obama is now trying to override the Senate rules by challenging the Constitutional authority of the Senate.
He is attempting this maneuver so that he can make unconfirmed appointments to stack the NLRB with Union Cronies, and to circumvent the law passed by Congress establishing the CFPB, which states in its language that the Director must be confirmed by the Senate.
This Congressional language is clearly defended in Article, 2, Section 2 of the Constitution, which gives the President the power to appoint “such inferior officers” but also reserves the power of Congress to limit the President by requiring Senate approval. In this case Congress put actual language into the law requiring Senate confirmation of the D/CFPB, and also limiting the power of the CFPB until such a Director is confirmed. The President does not like this.
Obama further declares that he should have the power to circumvent the Constitution because he has not made as many appointments as Bush did. Besides being irrelevant to the Constitutional argument, this completely ignores the fact that for over two years Democrats had complete control of Congress and rubber stamped all of his appointments, thus reducing the need for him to make recess appointments.
Congressional Democrats including Senators Webb and Warner seem not only content to stand by and ignore this power grab, but are actually applauding his “bold move”. I wonder how they will feel once the precedence is set, and a Republican President attempts the same “bold move”.
I urge every American to contact their Senators and Representative and demand that they stop this attack on our Constitution by President Obama.
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