U.S. Senate Recess Appointments Ruled Unconstitutional

Jun 27, 2014

The U.S. Supreme Court dealt with what some media outlets are calling an historic blow to executive powers, when it invalidated four 2012 appointments to the National Labor Relations Board, in a decision Thursday.

At issue was whether the Senate was in session, or in recess, at the time of the appointments. 

Senator Mike Lee:

“Today, all nine Supreme Court Justices, including those appointed by this president, confirmed that President Obama acted unconstitutionally when in January 2012 he made four recess appointments at a time when the Senate was not in recess. Our government is not a government of one and today’s ruling affirms that.”

The Constitution allows for recess appointments, but the decision effectively states that it is the prerogative of the Senate, not the executive branch to define when the Senate is in recess.