A second federal appeals court has ruled that President Barack Obama overstepped his authority when he made a recess appointment to the National Labor Relations Board in 2010.
The ruling handed down by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia states that recess appointments may be made only between Senate sessions—not any time the Senate is adjourned or otherwise temporarily away on break. The ruling, rendered by a 2-1 vote, further states that President Obama specifically exceeded his constitutional authority by installing an NLRB member in March 2010 when the Senate was away on a two-week break.
The U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., made a similar ruling in January. The Obama administration has appealed that earlier ruling to the Supreme Court. The administration bases the appeal on its contention that the court’s interpretation would nullify hundreds of presidential appointments dating back more than a century.
In response to today’s ruling by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the Workforce Fairness Institute issued a statement. In it, institute spokesman Fred Wszolek says the U.S. judicial branch “is confirming what everyone outside the Obama administration has known all along—the Senate was not in recess when the president made his appointments; therefore, they are invalid, the board’s actions [are] illegitimate, and the federal agency does not have a legal quorum.”
Wszolek further says, “The time has come for President Obama to respect co-equal branches of government as well as the U.S. Constitution, and end the giveaways to the big labor bosses who bankrolled his political campaigns.”