Just Another Guy with Opinions

Bush Makes Recess Appointments

Posted by shadmia on April 7, 2007


What does President Bush do when his nominees can’t or won’t get Congressional approval? He waits until Congress takes a break and then appoints them anyway. He has taken this approach more than 100 times in the past. In perhaps his most controversial such appointment, he named John R. Bolton as ambassador to the United Nations in 2005. Bolton served until late last year, when the 109th Congress adjourned and he was constitutionally required to step down.

He has continued to use this tactic and made three recent appointments, while Congress was in recess, that could not get Congressional approval.

  • Susan E. Dudley — Director of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs
  • Andrew G. Biggs — Deputy Director of the Social Security Administration
  • Sam Fox ———— Ambassador to Belgium

All three were either rejected or would have been rejected by Congress.

Susan E. Dudley, “A conservative academic who has written that markets do a better job of regulating than the government does and that it is more cost-effective for people who are sensitive to pollution to stay indoors on smoggy days than for government to order polluters to clean up their emissions.” will have an opportunity to change or block all regulations proposed by government agencies.

Andrew G. Biggs, “a researcher at the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank in Washington, has been an outspoken proponent of converting Social Security benefits into self-directed retirement accounts” becomes its Deputy Director.

Sam Fox, “a St. Louis businessman and GOP fundraiser who contributed $50,000 to the Swift Boat veterans’ controversial campaign against Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) in the 2004 presidential race” named Belgium Ambassador.

Leslie Phillips, Communications Director, of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, criticized Bush:

The recess appointment, she said, “shows disrespect for the advise-and-consent responsibilities of the U.S. Senate and for the American people, on whose behalf the president acts. The power to recess appoint should not be used to avoid any scrutiny of presidential nominees.”

Is it that Bush just doesn’t care about the opinions of Congress and by extension the people of the United States and is willing to use/abuse his presidential powers to get his own way or is he just playing to his political base, knowing that his time in office is running out?

Jonathon Alter of Newsweek Magazine discusses some of the issues involved with Keith Olbermann:


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One Response to “Bush Makes Recess Appointments”

  1. Yea, I did not like that when I heard about this!!

    Asher Heimermann

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