Mike Lee Stands Up to Obama on Recess Nominations

Monday, January 30th, 2012 and is filed under Blog

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Several weeks ago, Barack Obama engaged in one of the most unprecedented assaults on the Constitution.  He appointed Richard Cordray as the first chief of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and named three new members to the National Labor Relations Board, even though the Senate did not approve them.

Obama claimed the he was using his authority to make appointments during the congressional recess.  The problem is that Congress never recessed.  In fact, during the Christmas/ New Years vacation, Congress passed a two-month extension of the payroll tax cut and received information about the Treasury bumping up against the debt ceiling.  In other words, being that Congress was officially in a pro forma session, Obama’s appointments were illegal and should be deemed void.

Republicans promised profusely to fight back against Obama’s power grab.  It didn’t take long for them to cave, by declining to sue Obama in court.  Now, Senator Mike Lee is taking up the banner.  He is refusing to release his hold on any future presidential appointees until Obama agrees to resubmit those four illegal appointments for Senate confirmation.  Lee explained, “I find myself duty bound to resist the consideration and approval of additional nominations until the president takes steps to remedy the situation.  It’s really for the Senate, and not the President of the United States to determine when the Senate is in session.”

This strategy is proving to be effective, as it is already getting under Obama’s skin.  Unfortunately, Lee’s bold stance is already making some Republicans uncomfortable.  We must ensure that Mike Lee is not left out alone in the field to fight against Obama’s illegal power grab without any reinforcements.  Here is a list of the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee.  Please call the Republican members and ask them to stand with Senator Mike Lee.  Tell them to block all of Obama’s judiciary nominees until he agrees to resubmit his “recess” appointees before the full Senate.