In what can be described as a stinging rebuke to President Obama's power grab concerning "recess appointments" - a federal appeals court today declared that the President's appointments to the National Labor Relations Board were unconstitutional.
Today, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals of the D.C. Circuit ruled unanimously that the President overstepped his authority - an unconstitutional move - by making "recess" appointments when the Senate was not in recess.
As I told Megyn Kelly on FOX News today, this is a sound and well-reasoned decision which respects both the Constitution and the separation of powers.
In this case, I represented House Speaker John Boehner in an amicus brief that we filed challenging the President's actions. Speaker Boehner called today's decision "a victory for accountability in government."
In the decision today, the appeals court was very clear that the Constitution has meaning and should not be ignored: "The power of a written constitution lies in its words. It is those words that were adopted by the people. When those words speak clearly, it is not up to us to depart from their meaning in favor of our own concept of efficiency, convenience, or facilitation of the functions of government."
From the very beginning, no one questioned the President's authority to make recess appointments. However, those must occur when the Senate is in recess - which we asserted and the appeals court concluded - was clearly not the case here.
We were deeply involved in this issue. We urged the Senate to take decisive action opposing the appointments. And we heard from nearly 90,000 Americans who demanded President Obama abide by the Constitution.
While the Justice Department may decide to appeal this decision to the Supreme Court, the appeals court decision today sends a very strong message rejecting this Presidential overreach.
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