Regulation

GOP praises court for ‘rebuke’ of Obama

Greg Nash

Senate Republicans are cheering after the Supreme Court ruled Thursday that President Obama overstepped his authority by making three unconstitutional recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) called the high court’s ruling a “rebuke” of the Obama administration and said Senate Democrats “should be embarrassed,” because they let Obama trample over their constitutional authority to approve presidential appointees. 

{mosads}”The president made an unprecedented power grab by placing political allies at a powerful federal agency while the Senate was meeting regularly and without even bothering to wait for its advice and consent,” McConnell said in a statement. “A unanimous Supreme Court has rejected this brazen power-grab. “

“All Americans should be grateful for the Court’s rebuke of the administration—and the Democratic majority in the Senate should be embarrassed by its failure, yet again, to stand up to the president and to defend the Senate’s uniquely important role under our Constitution,” he added.

This Supreme Court decision in NLRB v. Noel Canning comes after three federal courts already invalidated Obama’s recess appointments.

In early January 2012, while most of the Senate was on Christmas vacation, Obama recess appointed Richard Griffin, Sharon Block, and Terence Flynn to the NLRB. 

But this happened while a handful of Senate Republicans were holding pro forma sessions in order to prevent Obama from making such recess appointments. They argued that they were in session, even if they were not conducting any legislative business.

The Supreme Court agreed.

“The unanimous Supreme Court decision today is a powerful rebuke to the Obama administration and a reminder to others that the Constitution gives the Senate powers the executive branch cannot usurp,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), the top Republican on the Senate’s labor committee. “Our founders wanted a president, not a king, and our Constitution is written to protect against precisely the kind of overreach this president demonstrated with his so-called recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board.”

Meanwhile, over in the House, Republicans said the high court’s ruling will “restore some checks and balances” in Washington.

“For more than two years, workers, employers, and unions have lived under a cloud of uncertainty because of the president’s unconstitutional appointments to the board,” House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-Minn.) said in a joint statement with labor subcommittee Chairman Phil Roe (R-Tenn.). “The president’s unprecedented action was one of many intended to further his own partisan agenda by circumventing the Constitution and side-stepping Congress. Thankfully the Supreme Court has helped rein in his abuse of power and restored some checks and balances to our system of government.”

Tags Lamar Alexander Mitch McConnell
See all Hill.TV See all Video