March 27th, 2010
04:00 PM ET
3 years ago

Obama to make 15 recess appointments

 'I must act in the interest of the American people and exercise my authority to fill these positions on an interim basis,' President Obama said in a statement Saturday.
'I must act in the interest of the American people and exercise my authority to fill these positions on an interim basis,' President Obama said in a statement Saturday.

Washington (CNN) - President Obama announced Saturday that he will make recess appointments of 15 nominees to administration posts who are awaiting confirmation by the full Senate.

"The United States Senate has the responsibility to approve or disapprove of my nominees," Obama said in a written statement that also named the 15 individuals. "But if, in the interest of scoring political points, Republicans in the Senate refuse to exercise that responsibility, I must act in the interest of the American people and exercise my authority to fill these positions on an interim basis.

"Most of the men and women whose appointments I am announcing today were approved by Senate committees months ago, yet still await a vote of the Senate. At a time of economic emergency, two top appointees to the Department of Treasury have been held up for nearly six months. I simply cannot allow
partisan politics to stand in the way of the basic functioning of government."

In a blog post about the appointments, White House deputy communications director Jen Psaki highlighted two other federal agencies.

"The roadblocks we've seen in the Senate have left some government agencies like the National Labor Relations Board and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission impaired in fulfilling their mission," Psaki wrote. "These agencies can now get back to working for the American people."

Obama has the authority under Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution to make recess appointments.

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Filed under: Obama administration • President Obama • Senate
soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. ThinkAgain

    As with everything since President Obama's election, the Republicans are playing politics instead of serving the country.

    I am completely comfortable with these recess appointments; if the Republicans had wanted a say in the matter, then they should have let the nomination process proceed.

    You know, more and more, I believe the Republican leadership and those who follow it in lockstep are suffering from mental illness, of the narcissistic, infantile variety. They cannot handle the fact that they lost and are out of power and are doing everything they can to try to make our President and our country fail – regardless of the consequences and the suffering that results.

    The Republican attitude is “my way or the highway.” If they were in preschool, they would have been put into time out a long time ago and made to stay there until they had learned to behave and get along with others.

    GOP = Party Before Country

    March 27, 2010 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  2. A keen observer

    Good job, Mr. President. The obstructionists lost this round; watch them squeal.

    March 27, 2010 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  3. polly

    Be ye not double-minded. He is not a Messiah.

    March 27, 2010 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  4. polly

    Thanks for adding more dog pile to the economic emergency.

    March 27, 2010 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  5. Daddy98hd

    You all just don't get it do ya. Just another shining example of shutting out the american people's feelings on how the direction O is taking us!! Spend Billions and Billions on something the public Majority does not even want or need!! Transparency HUH!! Can't wait to see O voted out along with the rest of his cronies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    March 27, 2010 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  6. New Father

    Finally after the stimulus created no new net jobs and the national debt is about to add over a $100 billion a month Obama has decided to create a few more taxpayer funded jobs. I can't wait until Nov. when after the midterm elections looks like the New Jersey and Virginia Governers race and the Mass, Senate race. After no new jobs created in over, how long the Dems been in charge, with what a few trillion in new spending. One would begin to look at the 'Great Depression' and 'Lost Decade' and realize government spending only breeds corruption and doesn't create jobs. Atleast Obama will start taxing people making under $50000 a year if they don't buy healthcare. 'Change' all you'll have left as gas, food, electricity, and the price of everything begins to get even higher.

    March 27, 2010 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  7. polly

    The Government will function in a beneficial way when it quits spending money we don't have. You cannot dig out of debt by going into more.

    March 27, 2010 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  8. joe smith

    Democrates CRIED when BWB did it and I remember Harry Reid called them into sesion everyday to hold up the nominations but I'm sure the fair balanced people on here did not think that was acting childish. Can some one also tell me how the GOP is holding everything up when Democrates have the presidency and majorities in the house and senate they did not need a single GOP vote to pass health care. Now you can all start calling me a racist red neck!

    March 27, 2010 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  9. Four and The Door

    Obama shames America's democracy in front of the world with his partisan politics. What he is finding out is that this and the poor performance of the things he has done this way have turned away the independents that brought him into office. It is obvious he has given up on being re-elected for a second term.

    March 27, 2010 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  10. Ken in NC

    Mr. President. You must work for the nation and that includes Republicans. I'm sure you can see they need you to work for them too since they aren't doing anything. This is what "WE THE PEOPLE", THE MAJORITY hired you to do. So do it. Don't concern yourself with the Republicans. Some of the smarter ones will come around and work with you and then there are the ones like John McCain. They will simply fart and blow their brains out for the lack of anything better to do.

    March 27, 2010 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  11. NC

    Wake up people....vote for a Republican in 2010 and 2012....vote out the crooked democrats and obama in 2010 and 2012...

    March 27, 2010 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  12. Perusing-through

    PRESIDENTIAL RECESS APPOINTMENT DISAPPOINTMENT

    Way to go President Obama. At a time you should be throwing some serious political body blows to the "Party-of-NO", the best you can do is 15 recess appointments.

    The GOP hypocrites are stagnating the government, every one knows it, and just when the Democrats have the "Big MO" on their side; you pull up with a measly 15 recess appointments. Pretty pathetic.

    March 27, 2010 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  13. Moderate

    Why shouldn't he. It was always said that a man elected president should be able to choose his own staff – oh that's right, those who said that were defending bush.

    GW made 170 appointments this way, not a peep from the republican house and senate then.

    Why are you hot about it now, he's only selecting 15. A long way from 170 or are you guys and gals math challenged?

    That's right, I did hear the tea baggers speaking – you are math and general education challenged! sorry

    March 27, 2010 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  14. Dave

    You better enjoy it while you can Ozero, cuz your party is going to lose big in nov. never in my life have i seen a more arrogant bunch of crooks as the dems.

    March 27, 2010 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  15. ran

    He should do all 77. Enough of the fear/hate/obstructionist/purity Republicans.

    March 27, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  16. Perusing-through

    15 RECESS APPOINTMENTS OUT OF A POSSIBLE 217. PRETTY LAME MR. PRESIDENT

    Until today, there were 217 appointments waiting for Senate confirmation. This is a record set by obstructionist GOP Republicans. The President warned the Republican he would do this, but they symbolically spat in his face and did 'relatively' nothing.

    The average hold time for these 15 recess appointments is 214 days. Why are the Republicans allowed to get away with this? But more importantly, why didn’t President Obama put all 217 up for Recess Appointments?

    March 27, 2010 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  17. frank in valparaiso indiana

    Its about time. Every president has always done this. Senate plays around, this has to happen to have people who can make decisions in the Executive Branch.

    March 27, 2010 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  18. Debbie from AZ

    Good. The Republican Party has held the progress of our nation hostage too long. Thank you President Obama, now let's get something done.

    March 27, 2010 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  19. Perusing-through

    REPUBLICAN GOP HYPOCRISY

    One year into Bush-II Presidency, he only had '5' nominees waiting for Senate confirmation.

    One year into Obama's Presidency, and he has '217' nominees still waiting for Senate confirmation.

    IS THIS NOT MORE PROOF OF REPUBLICAN HYPOCRISY AND OBSTRUCTIONISM?

    March 27, 2010 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  20. DA

    it is about time!!! DO WHAT MUST BE DONE!!!

    March 27, 2010 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  21. Hang it up, Obama!

    Who are YOU to lecture anyone, Obama? The most dishonest, arrogant politician this country has seen in a long, long time!

    March 27, 2010 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  22. Ed

    All presidents make em. Bush made tons of recess appointments.

    March 27, 2010 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  23. indy

    Wow, if President Bush did this, it was wrong, but when President Obama does this it's leadership. I see it all as politics. If his overwhelming majority can't get things moving, his nominees must not be so great. There's probably more tax problems in their background or maybe they're lobbyists who shouldn't get the job. Same old, same old.

    March 27, 2010 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  24. annie against biased news

    See cnn is only printing obama worshipping messages again! Go obama appoint some more progressives, socialist, marxist or communist or whatever you are calling them today! Remember castro loves you!

    March 27, 2010 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  25. joshua, Baltimore

    Its really hillarious reading Republicans say how Obama is one and done. Who I ask who out there would even remotely challenge him as of now? Lol Palin? Romney? Please! Lmao.... Short of a terror attack on US soil the repubs will be fortunate to have a shot in hell in 2016. If this administration continues its sucess, they won't have a chance against Hillary in 16.

    March 27, 2010 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
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