By Jueseppi B.
For most of President Obama’s first term, Republicans used legislative trickery to try to prevent the functioning of two federal agencies they hate, the National Labor Relations Board and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. First they would filibuster the president’s nominees ….. Then they would create fake legislative sessions for the Senate during its recess, intended solely to prevent Mr. Obama from making recess appointments as an end run.
Astonishingly, a federal appeals court upheld this strategy on Friday …. The court even broke with the presidential practice of 150 years by ruling that only vacancies arising during a narrow recess period qualify for recess appointments.
…. The situation demonstrates how dysfunctional Washington has become because of these Republican abuses….With no sign that Republicans are willing to let up on their machinations, Mr. Obama was entirely justified in using his executive power to keep federal agencies operating.
Read the rest of the story at The New York Times.
From The Daily Beast:
The GOP Plan to Steal Elections
The GOP Plan to Steal Elections. Republicans are proposing a radical rule change in swing states – one that would have handed Romney the election. Michael Tomasky on this jaw-dropping outrage.
….. We could toss all this information onto the ever-growing “Oh, those crazy Republicans” slag heap, have a laugh, and let it go. But this is concerted and serious. Rules, laws, customs, and norms that we have all abided by for centuries (the Electoral College and the primacy of federal law) or decades (recess appointments) have simply been producing too many outcomes conservatives don’t like. Most people, and movements, would try to change themselves so that they could maybe win under the long-agreed-upon rules. But conservatives have a cleverer way. Just make new rules. You better believe things can get worse.
In Case You Missed It……
Here’s a quick glimpse at what happened this week on WhiteHouse.gov:
Inauguration Weekend: On Saturday, Americans across the country took part in the National Day of Service, a project started four years ago to honor the life and legacy of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The First Family kicked off the weekend at Burrville Elementary School in Washington, D.C. where they worked on school improvements. Watch the President and First Lady speak at the service event here.
On Sunday, in accordance with the Constitution which states the President must take the oath of office on January 20 in the year of an inauguration, President Obama and Vice President Biden were officially sworn in. Check out video of the President taking the oath at the White House and the Vice President taking the oath at the Naval Observatory.
Inauguration Day: On Monday, President Obama delivered his Inaugural Address to the country and was publicly sworn in for a second term. Fittingly on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, President Obama shared his vision for a second term. President Obama said, “My fellow Americans, we are made for this moment, and we will seize it – so long as we seize it together.”
Check out the 57th Presidential Inauguration page, which includes our featured video on opportunities to interact with the White House, graphics to share on Facebook and a photo gallery from the historic weekend.
- Watch the full address here.
- Listen to the speech here.
- Watch the complete Inauguration Ceremony here.
- Watch the President and Vice President speak at an Inaugural Luncheon here.
- Watch Highlights from the 2013 Inaugural Parade here.
Surprise: On Tuesday, the President and the First Lady were in the Blue Room where they surprised visitors during their White House tour. The First Lady used her new Twitter account to let followers know what was happening beforehand.
Fireside Hangouts: On Thursday, Vice President Biden took part in the latest “Fireside Hangout” hosted by Google. The Vice President outlined the Administration’s plan to protect our communities from gun violence, while answering questions from participants.
White and Cordray Nominated: On Thursday, President Obamanominated Mary Jo White for head of the Securities and Exchange Commission and called for Richard Cordray to continue as Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Both can play pivotal roles in the financial sector as White will be asked to keep Wall Street and banks accountable, while Cordray will oversee the laws that protect everyday Americans.
“These are people with proven track records,” said President Obama. “They are going to look out for the American people, for American consumers, and make sure that our marketplace works better — more transparently, more efficiently, more effectively.”
A little Inaugural Day swag from the First Couple:
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