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Judicial Watch: Clinton Ineligible to serve as Secretary of State

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The Sushi Bandit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 05:33 PM
Original message
Judicial Watch: Clinton Ineligible to serve as Secretary of State
This is for all of my fellow DU'ers who wish this story would go away!

Story here: http://www.judicialwatch.org/news/2008/dec/judicial-wat...

Ineligibility Clause of Constitution Prohibits Clinton Appointment

Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, announced today that Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton is constitutionally ineligible to serve as Secretary of State in the Obama administration.

According to the Ineligibility Clause of the United States Constitution, no member of Congress can be appointed to an office that has benefited from a salary increase during the time that Senator or Representative served in Congress. A January 2008 Executive Order signed by President Bush during Hillary Clinton's current Senate term increased the salary for Secretary of State, thereby rendering Senator Clinton ineligible for the position.

Specifically, Article I, section 6 of the U.S. Constitution provides "No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the Emoluments whereof shall have been encreased during such time." The provision is seen by most as designed by our Founding Fathers to protect against corruption.

Former President Richard Nixon circumvented this constitutional provision after appointing former Ohio Senator William Saxbe to the position of Attorney General. The Nixon administration managed to force legislation through Congress to reduce the salary for the position of Attorney General to the level that existed prior to Senator Saxbe's appointment. This scheme, known thereafter as "The Saxbe Fix," was also used to allow Senator Lloyd Bentsen to assume the position of Treasury Secretary under President Clinton.

"The Saxbe Fix" may reduce the salary of Secretary of State to previous levels, but it does not affect what is a clear constitutional prohibition. It cannot change the fact that the salary had been increased while Senator Clinton served in Congress. (President Ronald Reagan reportedly did not appoint Senator Orrin Hatch to the Supreme Court because of this provision.) Simply put, the Constitution does not provide for a legislative remedy for the Ineligibility Clause.

"There's no getting around the Constitution's Ineligibility Clause, so Hillary Clinton is prohibited from serving in the Cabinet until at least 2013, when her current term expires," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. "Barack Obama should select someone who is eligible for the position of Secretary of State and save the country from a constitutional battle over Hillary Clinton's confirmation. No public official who has taken the oath to support and defend the Constitution should support this appointment. And aside from the constitutional issue, Hillary Clinton's long track record of corruption makes her a terrible choice to serve as the nation's top diplomat."

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Idealism Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 05:35 PM
Response to Original message
1. As Turley pointed out
You can go back to nullify the raise given to the SoS position to get around the clause. Case closed.
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onehandle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 05:39 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Yep. Fixed. Hillary's in. Obama gets his pick. nt
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robinlynne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 05:42 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. makes perfect sense to me. Illiminate the problem. solved.
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BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 05:58 PM
Response to Reply #1
6. If Turley said it, it is valid and true. He is the best.
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dsc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 05:44 PM
Response to Original message
4. funny how this never came up in regards to
Ashcroft or Maneta.
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-06-08 12:39 AM
Response to Reply #4
18. Neither Ashcroft nor Mineta was appointed to an executive office directly from the Congress,
Edited on Sat Dec-06-08 12:51 AM by struggle4progress
so the Constitutional prohibition obviously did not apply

With regard to Clinton, there's a established history of such appointments going back to the early 20th century, typically repaired by undoing the salary modification
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dsc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-06-08 05:09 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. Ashcroft lost
but he was still a Senator at the time of his appointment.
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-06-08 05:39 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. Don't congressional terms end on 3 January?
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aquart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 05:58 PM
Response to Original message
5. Ah, the Clinton Harassment Bureau.
They must be thrilled to have work.
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jrockford Donating Member (504 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 08:45 PM
Response to Reply #5
14. The Israeli lobby really wants HRC in there.
I hardly call it a Clinton Harassment Bureau. She's a hawk. A poor excuse for a democrat. And seems to share Lieberman's (R-Israel)'s agenda.
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oberliner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-06-08 05:27 AM
Response to Reply #14
20. This whole "Lieberman (R-Israel)" business
It's interesting how you refer to Joe Lieberman, who is probably the most high profile Jewish member of the Senate, as representing Israel rather than the United States, in spite of the fact that his position on Israel is not all that different from that of most other Senators.
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stopbush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 06:06 PM
Response to Original message
7. Couldn't Hillary simply refuse any salary for the position?
She's already a millionaire many times over.

The point of the clause in the Constitution is clear: people in government positions shouldn't be allowed to increase the salary of a position they hope to ascend to - to in effect give themselves a raise before securing the job. But if Hillary turns down the salary - as did JFK with his salary - then she's not ascending to the position to gain a financial benefit. That would seem to eliminate the "corruption" aspect of the Emoulments clause.
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Breeze54 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 06:08 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Then why is she millions in debt?
:shrug:

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stopbush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 06:09 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. Her campaign is millions in debt, not her personally.
There's a difference, you know.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 06:14 PM
Response to Original message
10. Not that I care that much what Judicial Watch says, but if they say
"Former President Richard Nixon circumvented this constitutional provision after appointing former Ohio Senator William Saxbe to the position of Attorney General. The Nixon administration managed to force legislation through Congress to reduce the salary for the position of Attorney General to the level that existed prior to Senator Saxbe's appointment. This scheme, known thereafter as "The Saxbe Fix," was also used to allow Senator Lloyd Bentsen to assume the position of Treasury Secretary under President Clinton"

how can they then say "There's no getting around the Constitution's Ineligibility Clause"? Haven't they just told us it's been got round before, once by each party? 'Circumvent' literally means 'get around'.
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MasonJar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 06:48 PM
Response to Original message
11. Since this is another Bushista Executive order (number one million and ?)
surely it can be rescinded along with hopefully all of the other ones made by the "moran"-in-chief.
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stillcool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 07:30 PM
Response to Original message
12. They're a little late to the party...
aren't they?
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-06-08 12:15 AM
Response to Reply #12
17. It's probably a hook for one of their fund-raising letters to an old Clinton-haters list
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no_hypocrisy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 08:03 PM
Response to Original message
13. HRC could also resign her seat in the Senate and then be confirmed.
As a private citizen, there is no constitutional problem.
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Doctor_J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 09:23 PM
Response to Original message
15. Oh, God they're back
This band of terrorists should be investigated aggressively by the new DoJ
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 11:31 PM
Response to Original message
16. Isn't Judicial Watch a wingnut group that helped Gingrich kill healthcare reform in the early 90s
by attacking the then First Lady Clinton?

And didn't Judicial Watch spend much of the rest of Clinton's first term pushing Whitewater-related nonsense?

And why, oh why, after all these years doesn't DU have a one-finger salute smilie?
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fasttense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-06-08 06:11 AM
Response to Original message
22. What is Judicial Watch?
From their web site: "Judicial Watch, Inc., a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation, promotes transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law."

How can you be a conservative and a non-partisan at the same time? Isn't being a conservative automatically alien you with the Republicon party? Especially if you announce you are conservative in the 1st line of your self description. They are just anti-liberal and anti-progressive but all the time they are really non-partisan. I guess they are non-partisan like the bush is non-partisan.

Seems to me they want their cake and eat it too.
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