Bench Memos

Reid to Block Recess Appointees

Today’s Robert Novak column features this tidbit, illustrating another way how loss of GOP Senate control will make it more difficult for President Bush to get his judicial  nominees on the bench.

Sen. Harry Reid, leading the Senate’s new Democratic majority, is framing next year’s schedule in a way that will make it difficult, if not impossible, for President Bush to give recess appointments to nominees blocked for confirmation.

Reid’s schedule limits Senate recesses to one week. Recess appointments usually are made only when Congress has been out of session for at least 10 days. That may kill any consideration of trying to seat federal appeals court judges whose nominations had been stalled even in the Republican-controlled Senate. The downside may be a rebellion by senators if their breaks are held to one week.

Jonathan H. Adler — Jonathan H. Adler teaches courses in environmental, administrative, and constitutional law at the Case Western Reserve University School of Law.

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