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Tilting at Windmills

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January 5, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

GOOD LUCK, JULIE!....Can I just say that I'd hate to be Julie Myers right now? I mean, I'm sure she's happy that she got that recess appointment as the head of DHS's Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, but she's going to be absolutely crucified by a bipartisan lynch mob of bloggers and pundits the first time she so much as spells a word wrong on an interagency memo. Insects on specimen plates have nothing on this gal.

BY THE WAY: I'm sure I ought to know this, but what's the deal with all these recess appointments, anyway? Clinton did a few, but that's because he had Jesse Helms and Orrin Hatch to contend with. Is it really the case that Bush can't even convince his own party to confirm these losers? Or is there something else going on?

Kevin Drum 11:36 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (54)

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Dubya made more than just one questionable recess appointment..(link to earlier post)

Once again, Dubya chooses to bypass the legislative branch...

Posted by: grape_crush on January 5, 2006 at 11:47 PM | PERMALINK

The continual surprise of this administration is the virtual lack of any attempt to ameliorate their image, heck, even their polls. Except for today's faux Greatest Hits concert feat. Allbright, Powell, et al, they stay completely focused on doing and saying whatever the hell they want.

That Myers, and the rest are so completely unqualified, that such blatant cronyism remains the normal course of events is unbelievable. People often quip that one should stop digging when one finds oneself in a hole. Clearly these people can't even see the hole they're in.

Bastards.

Posted by: SteveAudio on January 5, 2006 at 11:50 PM | PERMALINK

I think the deal is his Administration is trying to make the rest of the government irrelevant. They are asserting that in fact the Senate's "advise and consent" function is no longer relevant.

Step 2 will be re-appointment using recess appointment rules, when these peoples' first terms expire at the beginning of the next Congressional session.

Posted by: Technowitch on January 5, 2006 at 11:51 PM | PERMALINK

Step 2 will be re-appointment using recess appointment rules, when these peoples' first terms expire at the beginning of the next Congressional session.

The only way to prevent that is to take majority control and to not let the session ever go into recess.

Think of it as a 17,532 hour filibuster against the Administration....

Posted by: LBJ's Ghost on January 6, 2006 at 12:04 AM | PERMALINK

Recess apointments of losers are easier than long drawn-out hearings on said losers. Its clear that a majority of Americans (non-voters + Republicans), don't give a hoot about democracy, so the adminstration is doing what it does best - blatantly exercising raw power.

Posted by: Tom DC/VA on January 6, 2006 at 12:06 AM | PERMALINK

"Why didn't he just ask FISA for a warrant? They'd have given it to him."

What good is being president if you have to ask for things, like a common public servant?

Posted by: Allen K. on January 6, 2006 at 12:07 AM | PERMALINK

Technowitch: Actually, that isn't allowed. Or, more accurately, it is allowed, but you can't pay appointees who are recess appointed a second time. So unless they're willing to serve for free, they need to get a normal confirmation sometime within the next year.

Posted by: Kevin Drum on January 6, 2006 at 12:09 AM | PERMALINK

Kevin Drum:

Is it really the case that Bush can't even convince his own party to confirm these losers?

Yes.

Or is there something else going on?

Yes. With the exception of Julie Myers (maybe Dubya met her at a White House event? - can't really explain that one), some of the appointments seem to be bones thrown to his base...Business, defense contractors, anti-reproductive rights...along with a couple of guys appointed to the Federal Election Commission that had issues with voting rights and the 2002 McCain-Feingold law.

Posted by: grape_crush on January 6, 2006 at 12:10 AM | PERMALINK

I think he's just sticking to the Legislature again.

Or maybe he really does think it was more important to have the House out of session to give DeLay extra time to fight off Ronnie Earle than to bother them with a messy confirmation battle - I think it's called 'streamlining' the process (what, that's anti-democratic?..Hey this is the first president with an MBA and by God no corporation works as a democracy)

Posted by: reader on January 6, 2006 at 12:16 AM | PERMALINK

Err..more to it - it was important to have the Alito nomination not be crowded in the Senate with other messy battles (the DeLay thing was probably just icing on the cake)

Posted by: reader on January 6, 2006 at 12:17 AM | PERMALINK

This is the Bush government solidifying their dictatorship. And that's not hyperbole. The Bush government has no intent of letting anyone restrict what they want to do, and this large act of recess appointments is literally a step toward dissolving Congress. Frankly, at this point, I'm not sure the Bush government will relinquish power peacefully in 2008.

The only thing that will save this country from this bungling dictatorship is the people are tiring of the incompetence and will throw out the entire GOP if they need to. If Republicans want to save their party they better turn on Bush and hold him accountable damned soon.

Posted by: Puppethead on January 6, 2006 at 12:27 AM | PERMALINK

Why didn't he just appoint Alito? I haven't heard this point discussed at all, anywhere. Is a recess appointment even possible for the supreme court?

Posted by: The Anti-Kevin on January 6, 2006 at 12:32 AM | PERMALINK

"If Republicans want to save their party they better turn on Bush and hold him accountable damned soon."

Losta luck with that one. 2002 was not only a knife in the back for the moderate Dems who supported Bush; it was also a purging of the GOP ranks, esp. in the House. There just aren't that many moderate Republicans left in Congress - and I don't think there are any in the RNC.

The GOP put all its chips on a permanent majority. As long as they have that, they're unstoppable. And since the minute they don't have that, they lose their legal shield (not to mention their gravy train), they're not about to give it up without gimmicking the process as much as they can get away with.

Bush's recess appointments were as much about stacking the regulatory agencies as they were about sticking it to Congress. GOP/Bush loyalists are now in charge of the FEC. The 2006 elections are going to be a travesty.

Posted by: CaseyL on January 6, 2006 at 12:40 AM | PERMALINK

What if it goes this way: The Republican Senate leadership wants the Alito hearings to go forward, they think it will help them politically. But they don't want hearings on all the cronies and incompetents, so they are off the table, and out of the news cycle.

Posted by: Doctor Jay on January 6, 2006 at 12:44 AM | PERMALINK

"As the government forms, if we see indicators that there are purges of competent people to be replaced with ideologues in the security ministries, that would be disturbing," he said. "If competent commanders were to be replaced by those whose main qualification is an allegiance to a sect, that would be of concern to us." - Lt. Gen. John R. Vines of the Army, the top American operational commander in Iraq

What do you think he would say if he looked homeward?

Posted by: karog on January 6, 2006 at 12:47 AM | PERMALINK

Although "everybody has done it" is true of recess appointments, the clear wording of the constitution is that they are valid when the vacancy occurs during the recess; somebody really needs to file suit on this shit: none of the vacancies occurred in the last two weeks.
On a related matter, I wrote to my senator (Landrieu; Vitter is worthless) that she must vote agains Alito because, if George W. Caesar decides to cancel the 2008 election in the interest of national security, it is now clear that Alito will say "that's cool with me."

Posted by: Brian Boru on January 6, 2006 at 12:57 AM | PERMALINK

There are, I believe, two fundamental and intertwined reasons for the recess appointments. The first is laziness. Even if Bush is delivering his candidates to a sympathetic audience, like a Senate you have a ten seat majority in, it's still more work than simply making a recess appointment. The second reason is a fundamental contempt for the Democratic process. In Bush's now clearly stated view, the legislative branch is basically useful mainly as a legitimating function, and not worth engaging when it may actually obstruct a goal of the President.

I say these two points are intertwined because laziness and democracy are not really compatible features: the argument for democracy is never that is less work than authoritarianism or dictatorship. Dictatorship appeals very much to people who are politically (and perhaps otherwise) lazy.

Posted by: Nils Gilman on January 6, 2006 at 12:58 AM | PERMALINK

Can I just say that I'd hate to be Julie Myers right now?

It goes on her resume. Five or ten years from now, she'll be invited to talk on CNN as an "expert" on Homeland Security. When that happens, no one will remember to laugh.

Being a vastly overrated mediocrity has its rewards, and they exceed great the rewards of being a fairly assessed mediocrity.

Ask George Bush about that.

Posted by: frankly0 on January 6, 2006 at 1:02 AM | PERMALINK

Technowitch: Actually, that isn't allowed.

Bush was elected with 51% of the vote, which allows him to do whatever he wants, or so I hear.

Posted by: Bud on January 6, 2006 at 1:06 AM | PERMALINK

Or is there something else going on?

they did it because they can.

and only about 17 people in the entire country care.

only 1 in a 1000 could tell you what a recess appointment even is.

Posted by: merelycurious on January 6, 2006 at 1:12 AM | PERMALINK

Although "everybody has done it" is true of recess appointments, the clear wording of the constitution is that they are valid when the vacancy occurs during the recess; somebody really needs to file suit on this shit: none of the vacancies occurred in the last two weeks.
On a related matter, I wrote to my senator (Landrieu; Vitter is worthless) that she must vote agains Alito because, if George W. Caesar decides to cancel the 2008 election in the interest of national security, it is now clear that Alito will say "that's cool with me."

Posted by: Brian Boru on January 6, 2006 at 12:57 AM | PERMALINK

First, let me point out the reason recess appointments are singled out in the Constitution in the first place.

The founders never intended them to be used as they are being used in modern times. Their purpose was to allow for the smooth running of government when a vacancy came up during a Senate recess back in the days before planes, trains and automobiles - when it took weeks for members of the Senate to get word back in their home districts that their presence was required back in D.C. immediately and weeks more for them to actually make it back to D.C.

Bush is playing fast and loose with the rules, too. He's on a roll, redefining all laws. Because the Senate held a pro forma session Tuesday and then adjourned, Bush is contending that the second session of the 109th Congress has begun. Therefore, Bush is contending that the nearly 20 recess appointments are valid until the following session, which won't conclude until the end of 2007.

From the FEC, NLRB appointments alone, it's pretty clear to me that the GOP is going to do some end runs around voting rights laws, workers rights and civil rights laws, and want to have friends in high places - this is going to be an election (November '06) of nuclear proportions, I fear. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/01/05/AR2006010501421.html

These are really bad people.

Now, about Landrieu - She's one of the gang of 14, and none of them are going to vote no on Alito. Landrieu's pretty much worthless on everything else, too, she's another Joe Lieberman.

Posted by: Steve on January 6, 2006 at 1:24 AM | PERMALINK

merelycurious' numbers might not be right, but the main point is dead on.

We've spent the last 20+ years not teaching kids what it means to be a citizen of a democracy, and instead teaching them (and ourselves) the purpose of life is to be entertained and to accumulate stuff. So the only time attention is paid to politics is when it's entertaining, and the only time it's entertaining is when it's blood sport. Process, procedure and laws are boring. Only losers care about them.

So when someone like Bush comes in and tosses the lot aside, he's validating, and taking advantage of, what the country's been taught to value. Power for its own sake. Power to do what you feel like doing, regardless of cost (which only losers pay, anyway).

Democracy isn't fragile, but it does need mindfulness. It needs people to see what's really there, not their own wishful perceptions.

Posted by: CaseyL on January 6, 2006 at 1:31 AM | PERMALINK

It is not that he couldn't get his party to ratify these appointments. Instead, it's a matter of principle: He's the _president_. He doesn't _need_ to ask anybody for approval. The power to appoint in inherent in the office.

Posted by: focus on January 6, 2006 at 1:40 AM | PERMALINK

He's the _president_. He doesn't _need_ to ask anybody for approval. The power to appoint in inherent in the office.

Posted by: focus on January 6, 2006

How fortunate for leaders that men do not think.
Adolf Hitler

Posted by: G on January 6, 2006 at 1:51 AM | PERMALINK

"There must be no majority decisions, but only responsible persons, and the word 'council' must be restored to its original meaning. Surely every man will have advisers by his side, but the decision will be made by one man."
- Adolf Hitler

Posted by: nutty little nut nut on January 6, 2006 at 1:54 AM | PERMALINK

The cat's out of the bag.
He admitted to violating the law on national TV.
The top GOP bagman is copping a plea.
His poll numbers are in the toilet.
What does he have to lose?
The legal window dressings this administration has relied upon are being abandoned.

Posted by: joe on January 6, 2006 at 2:05 AM | PERMALINK

When you start using Hitler to buttress your arguments, you've already lost. A good reason for the recess appointments is that the minority members of the Senate have a disturbing trend of using the filibuster to block the nominees. While the Rep. have a majority, it is not able to break a fiflibuster when all of the Dems are in lockstep.
I don't agree with Myers, think she's bad for the post. The others have merit for their appointments.
Unfortunately, Bush probably thought he couldn't wait for the Senate to act. There are circuit court nominees who have been waiting for 2+ years for a hearing and a vote. Time is a wastin these days and the work needs to get done.
Joe seems to be a contrarian.
Bush's numbers are up in the past 2 months. He admitted to no crime. Read United States V. United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan and the foreign intelligence surveillance court appeals board, in In Re Sealed Case number 2, both stated hat the courts have no jurisdiction over foreign intelligence gathering, including contacts between foreign agents and US citizens.
The "top GOP bagman" also sent over a million dollars to Dem representatives. Including Reid and Patrick Kennedy. If any representative took a bribe for favorable actions, they should be jailed. Rep. or Dem. But Joe, you need to avoid the typical talking points and actually use some facts.
Steve, how are these people, aside from Myers, "really bad people"? Come on. That statement hangs out there like a fart in the wind. Smelly at first, but has no substance to last.
If Landrieu is being compared to Lieberman, I'd take that as a compliment if I were her. He is one of the more rational voices in your party at the moment.

Posted by: meatss on January 6, 2006 at 2:49 AM | PERMALINK

Read Hamdi v rumsfield and the Keith decision very carefully. He did break the law, and the courts were very clear that the executive does not have all these "inherent powers" the admin seems to think it has, nor does it operate in a vacuum. The same with Alito's signing statements. The courts do not seem to agree that the executive can just interpret laws duly signed by the executive any wasy they please. As for filibusters, take note of statements from yhe GOP base, such as "the Senate is not a majoritarian institution like the House of Representatives is. It is a deliberative body, and it's got a number of checks and balances built into our government. the filibuster is one of those checks in which a majority cannot just sheerly by force it's will, even if they have a majority of votes in some cases." re: The filibuster as an ESSENTIAL preserve of democracy- Steve Schwartz. So if the GOP could go on about how important the filibuster was in checking the power of the party in power, it seems quite hypocritical (surprise!) to see them whining now if the minority party feels the need put the brakes on now and then.

Posted by: synecdoche on January 6, 2006 at 3:42 AM | PERMALINK

meatss:

You're wrong on this: The "top GOP bagman" also sent over a million dollars to Dem representatives.

See Bloomberg News here:

U.S. President George W. Bush calls indicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff ``an equal money dispenser'' who helped politicians of both parties. Campaign donation records show Republicans were a lot more equal than Democrats.

Between 2001 and 2004, Abramoff gave more than $127,000 to Republican candidates and committees and nothing to Democrats, federal records show. At the same time, his Indian clients were the only ones among the top 10 tribal donors in the U.S. to donate more money to Republicans than Democrats.

And re: Circuit Court nominees who are waiting for their hearing, your point shows that you aren't serious about this discussion. Repubs during Clinton held up far more appointments than the Dems have.

Sheesh.

Posted by: SteveAudio on January 6, 2006 at 5:03 AM | PERMALINK

BY THE WAY: I'm sure I ought to know this, but what's the deal with all these recess appointments, anyway? Clinton did a few, but that's because he had Jesse Helms and Orrin Hatch to contend with. Is it really the case that Bush can't even convince his own party to confirm these losers? Or is there something else going on?

Kevin Drum

I guess 140 recess appointments is just a few when you are looking to critisize Bush for any reason. Bush also has the same kind of lefty wacko partisans as Clinton had to deal with.


FYI here is a definition of few. Somehow I don't think 140 qualifies unless you are a hypocrite.

few ( P ) Pronunciation Key (fy)
adj. fewer, fewest
Amounting to or consisting of a small number: one of my few bad habits.
Being more than one but indefinitely small in number: bowled a few strings.

Posted by: Fat White Guy on January 6, 2006 at 5:18 AM | PERMALINK

:Or is there something else going on?"

this isn't a serious question is it? the bushcriminal regime hasn't shown its total disdain for the other 2 branches of goverrnment enough? it isn't thoroughly obvious that they're completely drunk with power and do things without addressing the other branches specifically because they think they can and to punctuate their belief in their supreme and total control.

Posted by: gak on January 6, 2006 at 6:02 AM | PERMALINK

gee... what are we talking about vs what aren't we talking about ?

now do you see why he did it?

Posted by: cleek on January 6, 2006 at 7:37 AM | PERMALINK

Don't forget, it is the legislature (in this case, the Senate) that decides to go into "recess." That is what apparently gives the pResident the authority to make a "recess appointment" and avoid a filibuster.

It is clear that the "recess appointment" privilege was included in the constitution because, when the constitution was first enacted, it was assumed that the Senate would sit for only a few months of a term, and every once in a while, during a lengthy recess, it might be necesary to appoint a government official.

That has been proved to be an anachronism, since the "recesses" have been reduced to a couple of weeks.

Posted by: raj on January 6, 2006 at 8:06 AM | PERMALINK

BTW, why don't the Bushies just acknowledge the fact that they are going to bypass the Senate's Constitutional power to confirm? Their charade is getting tedious.

Posted by: raj on January 6, 2006 at 8:10 AM | PERMALINK

Something else?

The Republicans hate the US government. This isn't anything new--they admit as much, extremly clearly, as per 'drown it in a bathtub' Norquist, and any number of anti-government rants.

I don't mean to insult them when I say this: I think most would agree that the right is anti-government. So why on earth would we expect them to, y'know, care about two out of three branches of it? About all the little niggling rules and such?

And they own the Executive Branch. So they don't care about wiretapping or government intrusion or secret prisons not because they believe Bush -is- the government, but because they believe he's -against- the government, like them. His recess appointments, the massive and growing deficit, the manipulation of intelligence: if you hate, fear, and distrust the government, that all makes sense.

They hate the US government. They want to shrink, undermine, and preferably destroy the US government. They honestly do want to drown it in a bathtub. This is what ties together the disparate wings of the Republican party--the theocrats who follow the word of God instead of the will of the people, the corporatists who follow the scent of Money instead of the odor of the unwashed masses, these people who seem to have nothing in common, but they are bound by a revulsion of a common enemy: our government.

I wrote a long screed about this on daily Kos, then didn't post it: too obvious, I figured. The Republican Party of Anti-American Government serves a useful function when a minority opposition party. But they control all three branches: what we are witnessing is an eruption of self-destructive self-hatred. They don't -want- to govern well: they hate the government, even when they -are- the government. These people are allergic to themselves.

Posted by: adam on January 6, 2006 at 9:12 AM | PERMALINK

The thing that gets me about the Julie Myers appointment is that this is the one & only Bush abuse of power that's gotten the right wing bloggers up in arms. Why is that? Because it's the only one that lets them score ideological points, in this case about their pet cause immigration.

I get the distinct impression that what really bothers them about her appointment isn't how Bush bypassed the rule of law but the idea that she might get in the way of their crusade against immigrants.

Tim

Posted by: Tim Keller on January 6, 2006 at 9:23 AM | PERMALINK

Changing the subject and flippin' the bird at the Senate are good contenders for the why of these appointments.

But, no they can't be "recess appointed" a second time, because I believe that in that circumstance, they can't be paid. They'd have to be willing to work for free. These don't seem like $1 a year salary types.

Posted by: dcBill on January 6, 2006 at 9:30 AM | PERMALINK

GC: Yes. With the exception of Julie Myers (maybe Dubya met her at a White House event? - can't really explain that one)

According to the item you posted earlier, she's married to Chertoff's chief of staff. Huh.

SteveAudio: The continual surprise of this administration is the virtual lack of any attempt to ameliorate their image, heck, even their polls. People often quip that one should stop digging when one finds oneself in a hole. Clearly these people can't even see the hole they're in.

Right on. Definition of insanity: doing the same thing a thousand times and hoping to get a different result the thousand and first. Are they hopelessly stupid or mind-blowingly arrogant? Why limit ourselves by choosing one?

Posted by: shortstop on January 6, 2006 at 9:32 AM | PERMALINK

G (and others) have it right. He does this because he can. He's shown great eagerness to expand the powers of the Executive and this is just another page from that book. Wonder whats next.....

Posted by: Hack on January 6, 2006 at 9:35 AM | PERMALINK

Bush also has the same kind of lefty wacko partisans as Clinton had to deal with.

The GOP is in the majority and controlls Congress. Period. The so called lefty wackos have no power to stop an appointment and the Democratic Party can't exercise a fillibuster unless the gang of 14 idiots change their minds.

Not even close to the situation faced by President Clinton.

The Top GOP Bagman as noted gave no money to Democratic party members. Abramoff was a GOP partisan and true believer. I'll settle for the airtight cases where an actual quid pro quo can be shown through Abrmaoff's many emails, and verifiable testimony. I predict those cases will be all GOP, but if not, so be it. Down goes Delay and Ney and I suspect a few more.

Posted by: molly bloom on January 6, 2006 at 9:43 AM | PERMALINK

In the case of Amtrak, Bush is determined to destroy the passenger rail corporation that Congress wishes to save. Because the Bush wrecking plans are well known, the Congress would have refused to appoint his picks for the Board of Trustees. Hence, the Bush recess appointment of his wrecking crew to the Board.

The Bushies have three years left in which to destroy our government. They know their only chance now is to wreck things as quickly as possible. You can expect the flagrant-illegal monitor to rise quickly to the red zone now.

Posted by: serial catowner on January 6, 2006 at 10:20 AM | PERMALINK

These are more than just recess appointments. The Administration maintains that since the Senate had a session on Jan. 3, 2006 and is now in recess, these appointments hold until until the end of 2007. So these are longer even than the Bolton recess appointment which will expire 18 months after it happened. We may call these "recess appointments", but much (mischief?) can be done by these people who will hold real political power for two years, with allegiance mainly to Bush and the cabal.

But it really has to be viewed as a continuation of the campaign to consolidate and extend executive power, and for two reasons. First reason is that the executive has very publicly demonstrated to the Senate that it can make its preferred executive appointments without getting the "advice and consent". Second because the executives appointed hold no brief for any Senator. Their loyalty is exclusively to the Chief Executive.

Sadly, it is not just a continuation of the campaign. It is prima facie evidence that this Administration has no shame. It's been only four months since the debacle of Brown, FEMA and NoLa, and Bush's slide in the polls, but they continue to do what they do to extend their grasp on power without care for opinion either in the Senate or in the public in general. This is just one more grab for power.

Posted by: anonymous coward on January 6, 2006 at 11:05 AM | PERMALINK

It's a very clever ploy for 2008 to neutralize democratic chances for the White House (and taking back Congress in '06 or '08). The Repugs and Bush have hatched a plan to allow Bush to do whatever the heck he wants while the rest of the repugs "object" to it (nudge nudge, wink wink), thereby looking reasonable, even though, of course, they're enjoying the raw power their guys are exercising. If they officially approved of it, they'd have trouble distancing themselves from it in '08 (and '06). But with this nudge nudge wink wink arrangement, presto!, they'll be able to say in '08, "Vote for me, the reasonable repug who stood up to Bush." And the nudging and winking cycle begins anew.

Posted by: Big House on January 6, 2006 at 11:13 AM | PERMALINK

I understand that some of these 17 are very controversial. But some I've never heard of, and their jobs don't seem all that critical. So what's the deal with those? Is there anywhere with a COMPLETE breakdown of who these people are, and what Bush's motive for each recess appointment might have been?

Posted by: jussumbody on January 6, 2006 at 12:14 PM | PERMALINK

I understand that some of these 17 are very controversial. But some I've never heard of, and their jobs don't seem all that critical. So what's the deal with those? Is there anywhere with a COMPLETE breakdown of who these people are, and what Bush's motive for each recess appointment might have been?

Posted by: jussumbody on January 6, 2006 at 12:16 PM | PERMALINK

It's quite simple: George Bush doesn't like the idea of answering to anyone on anything. He hates the idea of having to get something past Congress, even though they are allies. He would prefer a presidential dictatorship. He's even said so in a joking manner; what we didn't realize at first was that he wasn't joking.

Posted by: Joe Buck on January 6, 2006 at 12:38 PM | PERMALINK

The Administration in power does this and everything else because it CAN not because it is right, proper, historical, legal or ethical.

Posted by: DCR on January 6, 2006 at 12:59 PM | PERMALINK

[i]BY THE WAY: I'm sure I ought to know this, but what's the deal with all these recess appointments, anyway? Clinton did a few, but that's because he had Jesse Helms and Orrin Hatch to contend with. Is it really the case that Bush can't even convince his own party to confirm these losers? Or is there something else going on?[/i]
Yes Kevin, there is something going on. It is called a filibuster.

Posted by: Mike on January 6, 2006 at 1:26 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, there's something else going on, it's called "tyranny." Bush wants to be our emporer, doncha know?

Posted by: Bushtit on January 6, 2006 at 2:13 PM | PERMALINK

"The US government has gotten too big."

"Let's eat it now, before it gets tough."

Posted by: ankh on January 6, 2006 at 3:24 PM | PERMALINK

But, no they can't be "recess appointed" a second time, because I believe that in that circumstance, they can't be paid.

Sure they can be paid. They'll be issued no-bid gov't contracts, just like Halliburton was.

Posted by: raj on January 6, 2006 at 4:01 PM | PERMALINK

What a morass of paranoia you folks are. Had anyone done a modicum of research, he/she would've discovered that the Senate didn't vote on Myers SOLELY BECAUSE Carl Levin placed a hold on her nomination (talk about democracy--look at the Senate rules), and he did that because DOJ wouldn't let him have a batch of documents unrelated to Myers. Had Levin lifted his hold, she'd have been confirmed, if only by party-line vote. Say what you will about her qualifications, there's nothing conspiratorial about her recess appt.

Posted by: exasperated on January 6, 2006 at 7:27 PM | PERMALINK

I'm waiting to see on this one. For some reason, I felt like former JCS Chief Myers was a pretty straight shooter, or at least wanted to be. I'm waiting to see.

Posted by: ferd on January 6, 2006 at 8:42 PM | PERMALINK

I can't help but think that in 2001 Dick Cheney made up a list of strategies to strengthen the executive branch that the Administration has been implementing ever since.

Posted by: dan on January 7, 2006 at 8:46 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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