High Court Limits President’s Appointments Power

Obama Speaks At League Of Conservation Voters Capital Dinner
President Barack Obama speaks during the League of Conservation Voters Capital Dinner at the Ronald Regan Building and International Trade Center on June 25, 2014 in Washington, D.C. Mark Wilson—Getty Images

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court has limited a president’s power to make temporary appointments to fill high-level government jobs.

The court said Thursday that President Barack Obama exceeded his authority when he invoked the Constitution’s provision on recess appointments to fill slots on the National Labor Relations Board in 2012.

The justices said in their first-ever consideration of the Constitution’s recess appointments clause that Congress gets to decide when it is in recess and that there was no recess when Obama acted. The president said he made the appointments in the face of Republican refusal to allow the NLRB to function.

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