The US Constitution gives the President the power to make recess appointments when the senate is not in session. I’d like to take a minute and delve into this topic a little further.
First, let us read that portion of the US Constitution:
The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.
Notice the wording our founders used….. “that may happen during the recess of the Senate“.
Allow me to explain this, in plain English, for all the Judges and constitutional experts. What this means is, John Doe is the current Secretary of State, who was vetted & approved via the senate after the president nominated him. The nomination process was completed and then Mr. Doe is sworn into his position. Now, It’s the Christmas recess of the senate, and Sec. of State John Doe has a heart attack and dies. At this point, the president CAN appoint John Q. Public to this position. The vacancy HAPPENED during the recess.
What the President CAN NOT do, is wait for a recess, then appoint someone who the senate does NOT approve of!
Now, John Q Public is ONLY the Sec. of State until the end of the next Session of the Senate. Hopefully, during that next session of the Senate, the president will nominate someone, and the Senate will hold Confirmation Hearings on that said individual. If the Senate approves of the appointment, THEN AND ONLY THEN, is the seat filled for the duration of that president.
Respectfully submitted by SilenceDogood2010 this Twentieth Day of January in the Year of our Lord, Two Thousand Twelve.