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High Court should reject Obama’s recess NLRB appointments to NLRB

January 21, 2014
Salem News

U.S. Supreme Court justices often are called upon to interpret difficult, highly technical points of law and the Constitution. At least some of them may be grateful this week includes a no-brainer.

It is a case involving President Barack Obama's unconstitutional appointment of members of the National Labor Relations Board.

NLRB members, like many high-level executive branch officials, normally are nominated by the president, then confirmed by the U.S. Senate. But two years ago, when some senators balked at Obama's NLRB nominees, he installed them himself.

Obama used a "recess appointment" to appoint the NLRB members without Senate approval. Such appointments can be made when the Senate is in recess, unavailable to deal with a president's nominees.

Previous presidents have abused the power, but not to the extent Obama did. Three federal courts already have ruled against him.

Obama made the appointments during a period in which the Senate was holding "pro forma" sessions once each three days. Such sessions often do not include enough senators to take action. Still, under the Constitution, they are sessions - not recesses.

Justices have several technical issues to address in the case. The bottom line is whether the president acted constitutionally, however.

Clearly, he did not. That should make it easy for the high court to rule against him and curb at least one of the Obama administration's excesses.

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Whether in a presidential election or a race for municipal council in a small town, individual votes matter. They can be decisive.

Recounts of votes cast in the election last November in Ohio have disclosed that in 43 situations, ballot questions were decided by one-vote margins or through special provisions to break ties. Thirty-five candidates won that way. Eight local tax issues were settled in that manner.

While elections that end in ties or are decided by single votes are rare, they do occur - 43 times last November. Races in which margins of victory or defeat are in single-digit vote totals are even more common.

In releasing information on last November's election, Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted said it is more evidence of the importance of making it easy to vote - but hard to commit vote fraud - in Ohio. He is right about that.

But his report also reinforces how critical single votes can be and how important it is for informed, concerned citizens to exercise their right to vote.

Your vote is important in every election. But in some situations, it can be the difference between whether a candidate you support wins or loses, or whether a tax you oppose is approved or rejected.

Remember that, we urge you, the next time an election is scheduled.

 
 

 

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