Professor Turley On Recess Appointments

U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Professor Turley Agree on Interpretation of Recess Appointments Clause 

January 25, 2013, Washington, D.C. — In February, 2012, constitutional law expert Professor Jonathan Turley headed to Capitol Hill to testify before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary to give his expert opinion on “Executive Overreach: The President’s Unprecedented ‘Recess’ Appointments,” arguing that President Obama overstepped his constitutional authority when he appointed people to serve on the NLRB Board and to head the CFPB.

Now, almost a year later, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled today in Noel Canning v. NLRB that President Obama's appointments to these four positions were indeed unconstitutional because while the House was on break, the Senate was not.

"In my view, the (Recess Appointments) Clause is now routinely used not only for an unintended purpose but a purpose that is inimical to core values in our constitutional system," Professor Turley wrote on his blog today.  "I have long favored the original interpretation of the Clause: that it applies only to vacancies occurring during a recess. This interpretation is truer to the Constitution and would avoid many of the controversies of modern times."

To read more about Professor Turley's thoughts on today's ruling, please visit


(photos by Claire Duggan)