Friday, December 5, 2008

Our Inspired Constitution

Some of you have heard the hubbub about whether Hillary Clinton is barred from being Secretary of State under the Enoulments Clause of the Constitution (if you haven't, check here, here, and here). Most people seem to agree that cutting the pay of the person in question solves the problem, and I find the question generally unimportant and the requirement to be poorly drafted and stupid. However, my opinion changed when I learned this:

It appears that every presidential administration after that of Richard Nixon has deemed the Saxbe fix sufficient with the sole exception of the Reagan administration. President Reagan's Department of Justice, in a still-unreleased OLC opinion, concluded that nominating Senator Orin Hatch to the Supreme Court vacancy created by Justice Powell's resignation would be unconstitutional even if the salary of the office were to be reduced. The seat that might otherwise have gone to Senator Hatch instead went to Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, and the rest, as they say, is history.

The hand of Providence is upon us--God bless the Constitution!

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