Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Is SecState Hillary Unconstitutional?

Now here’s an interesting question: The "emoluments" clause of Article I of the Constitution would seem to prohibit the appointment of Hillary Clinton to Obama’s cabinet because she is a sitting senator. Eugene Volokh explains.

Yes, it has been done before (Lloyd Bentsen under Clinton, William Saxbe under Ford), but it was probably unconstitutional then as now. Could this all be a ruse by Obama to flatter Hillary before having, reluctantly, to deny her the job?

Discussions - 3 Comments

The careful interpretation of the Constitution matters to folks in the Obama administration? Maybe so, and that worrisome business about O's birth certificate did mean something portentous and dreadful. Won't the issue in court come down to who has standing to pursue the suit? That seems to be a handy means of saying "never mind, we don't want to talk about it" in the higher courts these days.

I still say Obama can't afford to have Hillary on the outside of his branch of government. Far better to have her as an ally than a rival, anywhere. The State Department is not a bad place to be held hostage on condition of good behavior by you and your spouse.

I couldn't decide whether to point to this WSJ article here or in the Bush Legacy thread. Maybe here, because it is a legal issue whether or not Bush administration officials will be subject to political persecution under the Obama admin. Maybe if things go well those folks can afford to ignore the past and if things do NOT go well, and the left of the Democratic party is disappointed, some high-profile show trials would not go amiss.

If the Bush administration does not wind up with a public statement something like, "We are aware of the possibility of political persecution of the following list of people..." and GWB does not issue a heap of pardons, leaving its people to their fate in the face of this Congress - that's pretty horrible. He can't be pursued. Yet to claim righteousness, retire from the field, and leave his loyal people to the self-righteous mendacity of the Democratic congressional crowd when they might need political cover, looks just as ugly to me as the alternative. Perhaps he is not up to taking the heat?

If the Bush administration does not wind up with a public statement something like, "We are aware of the possibility of political persecution of the following list of people..." and GWB does not issue a heap of pardons, leaving its people to their fate in the face of this Congress - that's pretty horrible. He can't be pursued. Yet to claim righteousness, retire from the field, and leave his loyal people to the self-righteous mendacity of the Democratic congressional crowd when they might need political cover, looks just as ugly to me as the alternative. Perhaps he is not up to taking the heat?

Pre-emptive pardons. I am flabbergasted. "Political persecution"? Let's try "responsibility for one's actions." Bush's loyal people will no doubt be treated better than those whose torture they authorized.

In the meantime, Kate, you should probably read Eichmann in Jerusalem.

Constitution???? What is that, warrantless wire tapping, John Warner defense authorization act, A private Fedearl reserve bank. I just assumed the constitution had been thrown in the pile of antiquated documents to be ignored along with the bible. After all, such a limited government scope would mean that the great heroes in Washington could not be prudent all the time. My constitution is the Patriot act, while it guaruntees nothing outside of the robbing of my dignity; it alone has the power to protect me from those dang terrorists.

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