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Recess Appointments Made by President Barack Obama
Henry B. Hogue (au); Maureen Bearden (au)
Under the Constitution, the President and the Senate share the power to make appointments to the highest-level politically appointed positions in the federal government. The Constitution also empowers the President unilaterally to make a temporary appointment to such a position if it is vacant and the Senate is in recess. Such an appointment, termed a recess appointment, expires at the end of the following session of the Senate. This report identifies recess appointments by President Barack Obama, from the beginning of his presidency, on Jan. 20, 2009, until Jan. 23, 2012. The report discusses these appointments in the context of recess appointment authorities and practices generally, and it provides related statistics. Congressional efforts to prevent further recess appointments are also discussed. As of Jan. 23, 2012, President Obama had made 32 recess appointments, all to full-time positions. Six had been made during recesses between Congresses or between sessions of Congress (intersession recess appointments). The remaining 26 had been made during recesses within sessions of Congress (intrasession recess appointments). In each of the 32 instances in which President Obama had made a recess appointment, the individual had also been nominated to the position to which he or she was appointed. Tables. This is a print on demand report.
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