NLRB Recess Apointments Go To The Courts
The battle between the executive and legislative chambers takes shape this week as the showdown between the two over judicial appointments head to the courts. The issue before the 7th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago and the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals is whether the President has the authority to bypass the Senate in making three appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NRLB). President Obama made these appointments while the Senate was technically in session but in reality was on a twenty day recess. The President shouldn’t be allowed to skip the advise and consent portion of the appointment process simply because it is more convenient for him.
Regarding the legal dilemma of the NLRB, the Wall Street Journal wrote:
The last clause of Section 5 of Article 1 of the Constitution says that "Neither House" of Congress can adjourn for more than three days "without the Consent of the other" house. In this case, the House of Representatives had not formally consented to Senate adjournment. It's true the House did this to block the President from making recess appointments, but it is following the Constitution in doing so. Let's hear Mr. Obama's legal justification.
Furthermore, “The Constitution confers no such power, and allowing the president to wield it would oust the Senate from its own constitutional role,” attorney, Miguel Estrada, wrote in a brief reported by the Washington Post. In trying to protect their appointments, the Justice Department is sending Deputy Attorney General Beth Brinkmann to argue on behalf of the Obama administration according to the same Post article. This shouldn’t be surprising considering this President’s history of using the recess appointment in dodge the confirmation process.