Sigh. Mary Ann Akers is once again on top of this developing ‘drama’ (emphasis added):
Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Joe Biden (D-Del.) finally weighed in today on the Bush administration’s surprise recess appointment of Sam Fox to be ambassador to Belgium. Democrats are outraged, arguing it is illegal for President Bush to use a recess appointment to install someone whose nomination was no longer even pending before Congress.
Biden, who is running for president and was stumping in Iowa yesterday when the White House announced the surprise recess appointment, said, “This is a clear abuse of the President’s recess appointment power and contrary to the Framers’ intent,” adding that “If the President wants Sam Fox to be the Ambassador to Belgium, he should rescind the recess appointment and send him back to the Senate, so that we can vote on the nomination. We’ve been working in good faith [Riiiiight! –ST] on the President’s nominees and his recess appointment of Sam Fox flies in the face of this bipartisan cooperation.”
Not to be outdone, John Edwards jumped into the fray today lambasting Bush for playing the recess appointment card.
“It was appalling when President Bush attempted to repay the financial patron of the ‘Swift Boat veterans’ with a diplomatic assignment,” he said. “It is unconscionable that he now seals the deal with a recess appointment after it was clear Sam Fox could not be confirmed… This contemptible end run around the Senate is an affront to the veterans whose honor Fox paid to smear.”
For his part, Obama said in a statement Wednesday, “It’s disappointing that President Bush would defy the will of Congress by appointing Sam Fox Ambassador to Belgium. I opposed Mr. Fox’s nomination because I had serious concerns about his candor, judgment, and qualifications for this important post.”
It’s a sad day when a mere citizen such as myself has to point out again exactly what part of the Constitution gives the President the right to make recess appointments:
Under the Constitution (Article II, Section 2, Clause 2), the President and the Senate share the power to make appointments to high-level policy-making positions in federal departments, agencies, boards, and commissions. Generally, the President nominates individuals to these positions, and the Senate must confirm them before he can appoint them to office. The Constitution also provides an exception to this process. When the Senate is in recess, the President may make a temporary appointment, called a recess appointment, to any such position without Senate approval (Article II, Section 2, Clause 3).
Here we go again with another manufactured scandal, which, as I noted Wednesday, “is just one more in a long list of things [Kerry, Dodd] and other clueless, undermining Democrats have falsely accused the President of doing to make it look like what he’s done is a criminal offense when it’s actually something he has the right to do PER the US Constitution.”
In the meantime, related to the renewed talk about the Swift Boat Vets, since Fox contributed to them, Patterico catches ABC News smearing the Swift Boat Vets in an article that has been presented as straight news, without a shred of evidence that the Swift Boat Vets were ‘slandering’ (as they accuse the SBV) Senator John “F” Kerry back in 2004.