Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The only appointment Obama can make is to see the dentist

Okay, I'm nitpicking a little. But can you find the error in this report in the Washington Post?

"President Obama yesterday made his first judicial appointment, naming U.S. District Judge David F. Hamilton to the federal appeals court, a choice excoriated by some conservatives even as the White House touted him as the type of moderate who could cool the nation's long-simmering judicial battles."

The President does not make judicial appointments; he makes nominations. Here's the relevant text from Article II, Section 2:

"(The President) shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States..."

Appointment implies that it's something Obama can do without consulting anybody, except maybe Michelle; the Constitution makes it clear that the Senate has to give its okay.

On second thought, maybe I'm not nitpicking. This is the main newspaper in the nation's capital, for goodness sakes; they should get that right. I checked the home town paper; and it's correct there. It damn well better be; the name is the Atlanta Journal-CONSTITUTION, after all. Actually, the AJC had noting to do with it; notice they just reprinted the Associated Press piece on the NOMINATION. But that further begs the question: if the AP can get it right why can't the Washington Post ?

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