SCOTUS Unanimously Slaps Down Obama on Recess Appointments

This one is pretty amazing. The US Supreme Court has delivered a unanimous slap to the President saying that his recess appointments were illicit. Even the court’s liberals said Obama was wrong on this.

If you are out of the loop, here is what happened: Obama wanted to make some extremely partisan appointments to the National Labor Relations board (NLRB) so that he could deliver even more pro union decisions in the disputes between labor and businesses that the NLRB is set up to adjudicate.

The U.S. Senate did not like his choices because the folks Obama wanted to appoint were obvious union shills that would further erode the NLRB’s status as an unbiased arbitrator between labor unions and the business sector (as it is supposed to be).

So, the Senate gaveled itself to order every few days and then immediately gaveled itself out to nominally stay in session (called pro forma session) to prevent Obama from making recess appointments to the NLRB.

But Obama decided that the Senate was “in recess” all on his own without accepting the Senate’s own claims that it wasn’t in recess and he made what are called “recess appointments.” This is a power the president has that is essentially a sort of emergency power used when Congress is out of town but the president needs to do something in an emergency and hasn’t the time to wait for Congress to come back to session.

Obviously Obama’s partisan desire to stack the NLRB with union shills was no “emergency” and further the Senate was still nominally “in session,” so his attempt to claim the right to make recess appointments was illicit.

But Obama didn’t care about any of that. He made his appointments anyway and then the NLRB proceeded to make a long string of highly biased rulings that further hurt our economy (another of Obama’s particular goals).

Subsequently, Obama was essentially sued in a case called NLRB v. Noel Canning.

Well, finally the SCOTUS has ruled that Obama did, indeed, overstep his authority with his fake “recess appointments” and has ruled unanimously that Obama’s appointments were illegal.

The SCOTUS ruled that a recess must be in force for 10 days or more before the President’s recess appointment power kicks in.

Now, this ruling does put a dent in presidential powers as they have been used for quite some time. Obama isn’t the only one to abuse recess appointments. Other presidents have, too. But I, for one, support this decision as we need to start looking for ways to scale back what has become an imperial presidency. This more defined limit is a good decision.

Now the big question is what will happen to all the decisions Obama’s illicit NLRB has made over the last 4 years? Shouldn’t they all be vacated?

Tom Price, vice chairman of the House Budget Committee and a member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce was pleased with the decision.

“Today’s Supreme Court decision is a victory for the rule of law in this country and a repudiation of President Obama’s blatant disregard for the constitutional limits of his office. Because of the Obama Administration’s unwise and flagrant abuse of the recess appointment authority, multiple rulings by the NLRB could potentially be overturned in the wake of today’s decision. Responsibility for whatever legal chaos and confusion may occur as a result lies entirely with President Obama and his administration.

“Whether the White House likes it or not, we still have three co-equal branches of government in this country. It’s a shame the Supreme Court had to step in and remind the Obama Administration of that fact and to demand the president have more respect for our system of checks and balances.”

Congressman Price is the sponsor of the Employee Rights Act (H.R. 3485) – legislation encompassing a broad array of labor reforms to empower American workers and shield them from unfair treatment in the workplace.

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Posted by on June 26, 2014.
Filed under Barack Obama, Big government, Constitutional Issues, corruption, Culture, Culture Of Corruption, Democrats, Economics, Law, Liberals, Supreme Court, Unions.
Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago-based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart's BigGovernment.com and BigJournalism.com, RightWingNews.com, CanadaFreePress.com, RightPundits.com, StoptheACLU.com, Human Events Magazine, among many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs to discuss his opinion editorials and current events.He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the new book "Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture" which can be purchased on amazon.com. He is also the owner and operator of PubliusForum.com. Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions, EMAIL Warner Todd Huston: igcolonel .at. hotmail.com"The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it." --Samuel Johnson

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  • Hank_M

    Sure, the decision was good. But is there any reason to think that this will affect Obama?
    Knowing how Obama (coached by Jarret) works, expect labor unions to show up on the front lawns of the Justices. And I sure hope all of their income taxes are in order.

  • jim_m

    I disagree. obama is the only President to attempt to make recess appointments when the Senate was in pro forma sessions. He is the first President to declare that he was the arbiter of whether or not the Senate was in session.

    I am not surprised that this ruling went against him. I am mildly surprised that both Kagan and Sotomayor voted against him, but I think that this ruling is so obvious that even they could not come up with a big enough legal fig leaf to cover for a dissent.

  • Commander_Chico

    Of course the “Employee Rights Act” is one of those laws, like the “Patriot” Act or the “Freedom” act, which is just another Orwellian title.

    Guy wants to require a supermajority of workers to unionize.

    Hint to Warner: when private sector wages have been flat for about 20 years, with the difference being taken up by profits, unions are not the problem, they are the solution. If you want to preserve a middle class in the USA, that is.

    • warnertoddhuston

      Unions hamper the middle class. They don’t help it.

      • Commander_Chico

        Unions made the middle class. How did workers do before them, in the Gilded Age? Sweatshops.

        The USA only had a broad-based boom in prosperity after American workers started getting paid good wages, from the 1930s – 1980s.

        • jim_m

          News flash. It isn’t 1930 anymore.

          By 1980 unions had already outlived their utility by 10-20 years at least.

          • Jwb10001

            Chico doesn’t do current events unless it’s good news for his progressive buddies. Ask about Libya you get Iraq, ask about IRS you get Bush, ask about Obama getting bitch slapped by SCOUS and you get 1930′s unionizing propaganda.

    • jim_m

      When you look at the number of manufacturing jobs in the US and multiply by the total number of wages, unions are responsible for the largest loss of income in the history of the world. Union labor costs priced US based manufacturing out of the market resulting in massive job losses. Look at Hostess Foods from a year or so ago when they were forced out of business by their union.

      So don’t give us this “unions benefit the worker” BS. It doesn’t matter what union wages can deliver when they send all the jobs overseas or put companies out of business.

      If there is any reason that wages are stagnant it is that the ability to do work overseas has made the labor market far more competitive than it ever has been before. Any job can be done remotely. Services and call centers are located anywhere on the globe because internet and telephone service make communications cheap and those services have moved to the lowest cost areas. Manufacturing has moved abroad because domestic costs of regulation and wages have increased prices beyond the costs of transporting products from China and elsewhere to here.

      Of course you are ignorant to the concepts of market dynamics and how supply and demand effect prices. What you constantly argue for is a command economy where prices are fixed by the government (you know, that oligarchy you are always claiming to protest against but which you support in nearly every argument you make)

      Only recently have we seen that wages overseas are rising to the point that US based manufacturing is once more profitable. With overseas labor markets now becoming more costly, domestic labor can once again start to increase its costs without pricing itself out of the market. But I would guarantee that unions, if given the chance, will repeat their mistakes of the past. Unions represent their leadership and not the workers.

      • Commander_Chico

        Another “wages in the USA are too high” comment.

        Some moderate changes in tax and tariff policy would equalize the playing field.

        America has great natural resources, no reason to become a third-world country exporting raw material and then reimporting finished goods with all the value-added, but made by coolies. Let American workers make them and benefit from the value-added.

        • jim_m

          I did not say that. I said that unions demand wages that are too high. Wages are what the market will bear.

          I agree with your last paragraph. There is no reason to export crude so e can import gasoline. But then that would mean allowing refineries to be built. The left will never allow that to occur. If you want raw materials to be used for manufacturinng stop the leftist war on business. Stop the left wing attacks on economic growth. THe left stands in the way of every effort to grow this economy and use our resources.

          Of course you won’t see that fact. You will find all sorts of excuses as to why it is we cannot build a refinery or why we cannot build Keystone. You want Americans to have jobs? Stop the left from destroying the economy.

          • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

            “We must destroy the economy to protect the environment.”

          • Commander_Chico

            Well, how would “We must destroy the environment to grow the economy” sound?

            Tell me about a specific regulation that is unreasonable and killing the economy. Otherwise you’re just spewing cant.

          • Ken in Camarillo

            Restrictions of CO2 emissions. This will impede electricity generation and make electricity more expensive. A modern industrialized economy must have reasonably priced energy to prosper.

            There is NO environmental benefit in restricting CO2 emissions, or any other benefit that I know of.

            Note that the places that are more environmentally proper are affluent countries that can afford to spend some resources on reducing pollution. If you damage the economy, you reduce the ability to expend the resources to maintain a clean environment.

          • http://www.rustedsky.net JLawson

            How many feathers can you carry?

            Seriously, think about it.

            Think of all those lovely regulations you apparently worship as the equivalent of feathers. Lots of feathers. LOTS of feathers. Shitloads of them. With more added each day, each feather horribly important. None of them can be done without. Gotta carry them all – in big-ass duffel bags. Luckily they pack pretty well.

            You started out with just some small bundles in the ’60s. Yeah, the air was bad – but those feathers made it better. And there were water problems too – but they made things better.

            Politicians and activists saw that – and figured if some were good then more would be a hell of a lot better.

            So more and more feathers have been added over the years as things have continued to get better. But those small bags of feathers you started out with are getting pretty unwieldy, and now you’ve got these big-ass bundles of feathers that you – the economy – have to haul around EVERYWHERE you go, all the time, for even the simplest thing.

            The weight of all these feathers is really getting to you – and you’re not getting stronger from hauling them around. If anything, you’re getting weaker from it.

            And every regulation passed means one more feather to the load. In some cases, a whole chicken’s worth.

            Is there some point where you go “Fuck it, I simply can’t handle this load.” and drop the whole thing? Or can you just carry an infinite number of feathers?

            Hey, each one doesn’t weigh hardly anything, right? The economy should be able to support an infinite amount of regulation, right?

            ‘We must destroy the environment’ – bullshit. The air in the US is a LOT cleaner than it was in the ’50s and ’60s’. It’s a hell of a lot cleaner than in China. But if you see perfection as the only possible standard, you’re going to try to attain it no matter how much it costs… no matter if the costs far outweigh the good they’ll do.

            How about we crank back the regulatory level to the ’90s? Would that destroy the environment?

            Or would it help the economy?

        • Ken in Camarillo

          I believe Jim_m has accurately identified the problem/challenge. However, I am interested in hearing your specific suggestions about changes in tax and tariff policy. I believe that such changes might help, but anytime a government imposes “artificial” constraints, it is likely to distort the economy and it is just about impossible to get it right. The marketplace almost always has a feedback loop which tends to correct errors in policy, but government policy has no feedback loop (or an extremely weak one).

    • Retired military

      Gee Smuck. According to HuffPO (hardly a right wing rag)

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/03/wage-growth-slows-recovery_n_1471940.html

      The wage growth started slowing in 2009. Now what else happened in 2009? Oh yeah Dumbama took office

      • Brucehenry

        Whatever the Huffington Post said in that article, if you think wages have only been slowing or flat since 2009 you are misinformed.

        • jim_m

          Wages slowing is an issue of the labor market and the fact that the labor market is no longer confined within our own borders. The idea that there should be no effect on labor and the wages that labor can command as the market globalizes due to increased efficiencies in transportation and communication is laughably ignorant.

          Sadly, like most leftists, Chico thinks that wages should always be increasing and that any failure of wages to not increase must be some grand conspiracy of the right. The reality is that sometimes the market changes and it takes a while for things to work themselves out. I think we are starting to see that but it will still take some more time to see any significant increases and it may be the case that a new expectation in terms of wage growth must be accepted.

          There has been a major change in the mobility of jobs and in access to cheaper foreign labor. The idea that this should not have any effect on wages is asinine. The only way to change that is to create a closed economy that would be unable to deliver the wage growth because it would be far weaker and the ultimate result would be a damaged economy and declining standard of living. Chico might want to live in N Korea, but I think the rest of us will take a pass.

          • Brucehenry

            An answer chock full of strawmen as usual.

            Neither Chico nor anyone else has advocated here for a closed economy, or taken the position that “wages should always be increasing,” that there is “some grand conspiracy of the right,” or that job mobility and access to cheaper foreign labor “should not have any effect on wages.”

            Sometimes it’s hard to tell if you are simply a lying sack of shit or if you can’t fucking read. But it’s one or the other.

          • jim_m

            Yes, CHico has advocated for a protectionist economy that keeps jobs form being exported and penalizes importation of other products. His implicit position here is that wages being stagnant is an unforgivable situation.

            Whatever your belief, Chico does not believe that jobs should be allowed to leave the country and that government should intervene to guarantee that they stay here.

          • Brucehenry

            Ha ha his “implicit position,” huh? You are a fucking hoot.

          • jim_m

            He’s a big boy (or claims to be). If I am wrong he could have corrected me. His silence speaks volumes.

          • Commander_Chico

            Yes, tax and tariff policy should protect American jobs. No more dumping.

          • Ken in Camarillo

            You just took Brucehenry’s legs off at the knee.

          • jim_m

            LOL. Hope he’s not on obamacare.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            I rather hope he is…

          • Brucehenry

            Yes it is obvious that you hear volumes being spoken during periods of silence.

            But it’s The Voices, Jim.

          • jim_m

            Apparently, from his response I am not incorrect.

        • Jwb10001

          Because you say so?

          • Brucehenry

            No, not because I said so. Look it up, genius.

          • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

            You give fools a bad name, stumpy

  • jim_m

    Today the SCOTUS just slapped down obama on both forced union dues and the obamacare contraception mandate. Seems obama’s overreaching authoritarianism doesn’t fly with at least 5 justices.