The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take

From Fox’s Special Report with Bret Baier Wednesday, January 4, 2012

On President Obama’s recess appointment of Richard Cordray as director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau:

I think it’s not about the appointee or even about the agency. I think this is a lawless action by the president at the end of a long string of lawless actions. And it’s banana republic [style].

The president is saying: “I won’t let Congress stop me.” But it’s in the Constitution that you have to have the Senate’s approval… He [the president] can only make a recess appointment if the Senate is in recess. It is not in recess.

In fact, his own Justice Department argued last year before the Supreme Court that the Senate has to be out of session for three days. It has not been. And that appeal was based on a ruling of the Clinton Justice Department–three days.

You can appoint anybody you want in a recess appointment. You can appoint anybody who has already been rejected by the Senate. You can appoint anybody you want as a way to make a purely cynical political point in election year in Ohio, as Obama is doing. But you can’t do it as a recess appointment if the Senate is not in recess.

On the president’s strategy in making this recess appointment:

It’s cynical and it works. Look, [opponents like me are] talking about process and procedure and what would look like arcana. And [the president is] arguing “I am protecting the little guy against the Republicans, who [use] constitutional niceties to protect the rich and the 1 percent, the ones who have robbed you.” It’s a good argument [politically]. He wins it. But I think it’s disgraceful.

NRO Staff — Members of the National Review Online editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

Most Popular


The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Obstruction Confusions

In his Lawfare critique of one of my several columns about the purported obstruction case against President Trump, Gabriel Schoenfeld loses me — as I suspect he will lose others — when he says of himself, “I do not think I am Trump-deranged.” Gabe graciously expresses fondness for me, and the feeling is ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
PC Culture

Kill Chic

We live in a society in which gratuitous violence is the trademark of video games, movies, and popular music. Kill this, shoot that in repugnant detail becomes a race to the visual and spoken bottom. We have gone from Sam Peckinpah’s realistic portrayal of violent death to a gory ritual of metal ripping ... Read More