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Constitutional Law Keyed to Barnett
NLRB v. Noel Canning
Citation:573 U.S. 513 (2014)
In 2011, the Senate decided to convene for “pro-forma sessions,” where no business would be held, every Tuesday and Friday for one month. In between these pro-forma sessions, the Senate would “adjourn” (not meet) until the next pro-forma session. The President made recess appointments in between the January 3 and January 6 pro-forma sessions. The Appointments Clause requires principal executive officers to be appointed by the President with “advice and consent” of the Senate, but the Recess Appointments Clause gives the President the sole power to fill vacant executive offices when the senate is in recess. Sessions of Congress are one year in length, separated by an “inter-session recess;” the House of Representatives and the Senate also take breaks in the middle of their sessions, known as “intra-session recesses.”
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