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Blalron
06-23-2010, 12:36 PM
When I say fired, I mean just that. They didn't get the opportunity to do a face saving "resignation."

Mr. Moto
06-23-2010, 01:10 PM
Hard to say - some of those face-saving resignations are so transparent that they aren't believed by anyone.

Walter Hickel actually was fired as Interior Secretary by Nixon - but he brought this on by publicly disagreeing with Nixon and then refusing to resign. That might have been the last time.

SmithCommaJohn
06-23-2010, 01:12 PM
In 2003, Paul O'Neil, George W. Bush's first Secretary of The Treasury, was basically fired.

I think it's exceedingly rare for a president to go up to a cabinet member and say "I'm removing you," even though that's his right.

However, Bush did demand his resignation, which he submitted, and the administration made no secret of this fact. In my book, that counts as getting fired.

off the top of my head, I don't know when (if ever), a president demanded a cabinet member's resignation, with the cabinet member refusing, thereby forcing the president to outright fire them. Or maybe there was an instance of the president not even bothering to demand a resignation first.

obfusciatrist
06-23-2010, 01:14 PM
Just to put a stake in the ground (haven't done any searches yet) but Walter Hickle, Secretary of the Interior, published an op-ed critical of the Vietname War in 1970 or '71 and then refused to resign when pressured. Nixon then fired him.

So more recently than that.

Bosstone
06-23-2010, 01:23 PM
Or maybe there was an instance of the president not even bothering to demand a resignation first.President Thomas Whitmore: The only mistake I ever made was to appoint a sniveling little weasel like you Secretary of Defense. However, that is a mistake, I am happy to say, that I don't have to live with. Mr. Nimzicki... you're fired.

So July 4, 1996.

SmithCommaJohn
06-23-2010, 01:28 PM
President Thomas Whitmore: The only mistake I ever made was to appoint a sniveling little weasel like you Secretary of Defense. However, that is a mistake, I am happy to say, that I don't have to live with. Mr. Nimzicki... you're fired.

So July 4, 1996.

So that's the last time this happened in the U.S.

Anyone know the last time this happened...on Urf?

5 time champ
06-23-2010, 02:22 PM
The infamous Saturday Night Massacre in October 1973. Nixon quite publicly fired Attorney General William Simon and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckleshaus, in turn, for their refusal to fire Watergate Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox. Cox was finally fired by our old friend, then Solicitor General Robert Bork.

Mr. Moto
06-23-2010, 02:30 PM
The infamous Saturday Night Massacre in October 1973. Nixon quite publicly fired Attorney General William Simon and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckleshaus, in turn, for their refusal to fire Watergate Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox. Cox was finally fired by our old friend, then Solicitor General Robert Bork.

You have this very wrong - for one thing, the AG was Elliot Richardson. And the fact is that Richardson and Ruckleshaus both resigned in protest - they were not fired.

md2000
06-23-2010, 02:47 PM
The infamous Saturday Night Massacre in October 1973. Nixon quite publicly fired Attorney General William Simon and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckleshaus, in turn, for their refusal to fire Watergate Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox. Cox was finally fired by our old friend, then Solicitor General Robert Bork.

Yep. That's the one that comes to mind for me too.

Usually at that level, if someone sees a problem coming, they resign or offer to resign. These guys made it a principal that the boss actually come out and fire them, rather than make it easy for him.

Tom Tildrum
06-23-2010, 02:58 PM
Here (http://time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,948464,00.html) is a Time Magazine article on Jimmy Carter's major Cabinet purge.

SmithCommaJohn
06-23-2010, 03:12 PM
Somewhat related: my understanding is that, when a president is re-elected, it's customary for everyone in the cabinet to quietly submit their resignation. The president then chooses which ones to accept, allowing him to clean house while saving face.

I remember hearing that when Janet Reno, when Clinton was re-elected, refused to submit her resignation, which Clinton was expecting, and was prepared to accept. She basically said "if you want to get rid of me, you've got to fire me," and Clinton decided that it wasn't worth it to fire her.

Does anyone have any details on this affair (such minor details as whether or not it happened)?

ChrisBooth12
06-23-2010, 03:19 PM
The General in Bosnia?

Mr. Moto
06-23-2010, 03:58 PM
The General in Bosnia?

Generals aren't in the Cabinet.

Darth Panda
06-23-2010, 04:16 PM
Generals aren't in the Cabinet.

deleted

kunilou
06-23-2010, 09:16 PM
The line gets really hazy. In the above-mentioned Saturday Night Massacre, Richardson resigned rather than fire Cox. There are accounts that say Nixon fired Ruckleshaus and other accounts that say Ruckleshaus resigned -- a classic case of "you can't fire me, I quit."

Colin Powell was apparently asked to resign. In his resignation he offered to stay on as long as it took George W. Bush to find a successor. It took Bush one day to find Condoleeza Rice.

Donald Rumsfeld "offered" to resign the day before the 2006 midterm elections. After the results were in, Bush accepted the resignation.

In the Clinton administration, Henry Cisernos resigned as HUD Secretary while he was under investigation for payoffs to his mistress.

Lauro Cavazos was forced to resign from George H. W. Bush's cabinet while he was under investigation.

5 time champ
06-23-2010, 10:56 PM
You have this very wrong - for one thing, the AG was Elliot Richardson. And the fact is that Richardson and Ruckleshaus both resigned in protest - they were not fired.

:smack:Well, that's what I get for going by my memory of events at that point in time, should always confirm with Wikipedia especially in GQ.

My recollection from the public mood at the time was that both Richardson :o and Ruckelhaus were both fired by Nixon, hence the term "Saturday Night Massacre."

Per the OP, they certainly weren't allowed the "opportunity to do a face saving 'resignation.' " They were just quicker letter writers than Nixon.

Hari Seldon
06-24-2010, 03:54 PM
Well, I know that Andrew Johnson was impeached for actually firing a cabinet member, although I don't recall who it was. Congress had passed and then overridden a veto on a law that forbade the firing of a cabinet minister without the approval of the senate. After the impeachment failed to convict that law was a dead letter (but it still could be on the books).

Polycarp
06-24-2010, 05:03 PM
Well, I know that Andrew Johnson was impeached for actually firing a cabinet member, although I don't recall who it was. Congress had passed and then overridden a veto on a law that forbade the firing of a cabinet minister without the approval of the senate. After the impeachment failed to convict that law was a dead letter (but it still could be on the books).

Stanton, Lincoln's Secretary of War who continued to hold the Cabinet seat under Johnson, and apparently thought that he, not Johnson, should be in charge.

Channing Idaho Banks
01-30-2017, 10:03 PM
Current president has just fired his attorney general 10 days into his administration.

JKellyMap
01-30-2017, 10:22 PM
Current president has just fired his attorney general 10 days into his administration.

True...but hadn't Trump basically just not gotten around to replacing her yet?

Okrahoma
01-30-2017, 10:23 PM
Current president has just fired his attorney general 10 days into his administration.
She was not a member of his cabinet. The AG that would be a member of his cabinet will be confirmed in a few days.

dofe
01-30-2017, 10:31 PM
She was not a member of his cabinet. The AG that would be a member of his cabinet will be confirmed in a few days.

She was the Acting U.S. Attorney General, as was therefore technically a member of the U.S. cabinet. I would say this counts as a firing of a member of the cabinet.

Okrahoma
01-30-2017, 10:42 PM
She was the Acting U.S. Attorney General, as was therefore technically a member of the U.S. cabinet. I would say this counts as a firing of a member of the cabinet.Not Trump's cabinet, no.

US Presidents can choose their own cabinets. She was not chosen by Trump, thus was not a member of his cabinet.

running coach
01-30-2017, 10:45 PM
Not Trump's cabinet, no.

US Presidents can choose their own cabinets. She was not chosen by Trump, thus was not a member of his cabinet.

She was a holdover from the Obama Administration who Trump chose to keep on after Lorretta Lynch left when her term expired.

She's all his. Or was.

dofe
01-30-2017, 11:05 PM
She was a holdover from the Obama Administration who Trump chose to keep on after Lorretta Lynch left when her term expired.

She's all his. Or was.

Exactly. Yates was actually asked (http://politico.com/story/2017/01/trump-us-attorneys-233740) by the Trump administration to serve as Acting A.G. until Sessions was confirmed:

"Upon the request of the incoming Administration, Deputy Attorney General Sally Q. Yates has agreed to serve as Acting Attorney General until a successor has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate, effective at noon Friday, January 20, 2017," Hornbuckle said.

As the Acting A.G., she was therefore the head of the US DOJ, and therefore a member of Trump's cabinet.

Okrahoma
01-30-2017, 11:06 PM
As the Acting A.G., she was therefore the head of the US DOJ, and therefore a member of Trump's cabinet.You can think so, if it makes you feel better. But no, she wasn't. Neither is whoever is acting head of the Dept. of State.

Kimstu
01-30-2017, 11:38 PM
You can think so, if it makes you feel better.
Around here, it generally does make us feel better to use words in their well-known and commonly accepted meanings: (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabinet_of_the_United_States)

The Cabinet of the United States is composed of the most senior appointed officers of the executive branch of the federal government of the United States, who are generally the heads of the federal executive departments. [...]

Under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, an incoming administration may appoint acting Cabinet secretaries from employees of the relevant department. These may be existing high-level career employees, from political appointees of the outgoing administration, or sometimes lower-level appointees of the incoming administration.

Yates was appointed acting Attorney General by the Trump Administration, and therefore she was an acting member of the Cabinet under Trump. She was not (and never stood a chance of being) one of Trump's Cabinet nominees, but she most certainly was a member of the Cabinet.

If you want to clarify that distinction as regards the OP's thread topic, you need to explicitly point out the asymmetry of comparing Yates' case with previous firings of nominated and confirmed Cabinet appointees. Not just keep repeating, incorrectly, that acting Cabinet members are not members of the Cabinet, which they are.

Okrahoma
01-30-2017, 11:43 PM
Yates was appointed acting Attorney General by the Trump AdministrationShe was appointed by Barack Obama, in January 2015. Her "acting Attorney General" role was not an "appointment". If it was, it would have had, as per the Constitution, to go through the Senate again.

Appointment to one post does not carry over to another. Otherwise, Trump could just move the federal judge to the Supreme Court, arguing that he's already appointed and confirmed.

Colibri
01-30-2017, 11:43 PM
You can think so, if it makes you feel better. But no, she wasn't. Neither is whoever is acting head of the Dept. of State.

Yes, the Acting Heads are considered members of the Cabinet. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabinet_of_the_United_States) Dana Boente is currently the Acting Attorney General, and a member of the Cabinet until Sessions is confirmed.

Okrahoma
01-30-2017, 11:48 PM
Yes, the Acting Heads are considered members of the Cabinet. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabinet_of_the_United_States) Dana Boente is currently the Acting Attorney General, and a member of the Cabinet until Sessions is confirmed.
From your article: "All Cabinet members are nominated by the President and then presented to the Senate for confirmation or rejection by a simple majority."

And really, Wikipedia is not an authoritative source.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 12:04 AM
And really, Wikipedia is not an authoritative source.

It's better than any citation you've provided, which is exactly none.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 12:07 AM
It's better than any citation you've provided, which is exactly none.
I provided yours: "All Cabinet members are nominated by the President and then presented to the Senate for confirmation or rejection by a simple majority."

Do you accept your own citation?

Jim's Son
01-31-2017, 12:10 AM
"The Petticoat Affair" of the Jackson administration takes the cake as far as cabinet resignations and subsequent impact on national politics. The Secretary of War John Eatin married a widow with a dubious past by high society standards who add a sharp tongue. Remembering the accusations that Rachel Jackson was a bigamist in marrying Andrew before her divorce was final, President Jackson took the Eaton's side against the cabinet wives, led by Vice President Calhoun wife who refused to socialize with the Eatons. Martin Van Buren, a widower, was free to support the Eaton since he couldn't be nagged about it at home. Ultimately Calhoun and most of the cabinet resigned, with Calhoun becoming a regional figure instead of a national one. Van Buren became Jackson's successor but since the Panic of 1837 hit early in his administration, that may not have been a good thing for him.

https://featherfoster.wordpress.com/2014/08/20/andrew-jackson-and-the-peggy-eaton-affair/

Kimstu
01-31-2017, 12:33 AM
She was appointed by Barack Obama, in January 2015. Her "acting Attorney General" role was not an "appointment".

Did you seriously not even read the description I cited in the post you replied to?

Under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, an incoming administration may appoint acting Cabinet secretaries from employees of the relevant department.
Trump appointed Yates as acting AG. He did not, as you rightly state though with a fuzzy grasp of the multiple meanings of the word "appoint" in this context, appoint Yates as AG in the sense of nominating her for Senate confirmation of her appointment.

Appointment as an acting Cabinet member is not the same thing as appointment as a regular Cabinet member. But both acting and regular Cabinet members are members of the Cabinet.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 12:46 AM
Appointment as an acting Cabinet member is not the same thing as appointment as a regular Cabinet member. But both acting and regular Cabinet members are members of the Cabinet.
She is an acting AG. He appointed her as an acting AG. But an "acting" AG is not a member of the Cabinet. Because, as Colibri so helpfully provided, "all Cabinet members are nominated by the President and then presented to the Senate for confirmation or rejection by a simple majority."

Francis Vaughan
01-31-2017, 01:07 AM
If the cabinet had met, would she have attended? If the cabinet meets, prior to senate approval, who does attend? Government of the US does not cease during the handover phase. There are statutory positions that have roles that need to be fulfilled. If this was not an issue there would be no need to ask people to fill acting roles.

This is duck rules. If she has the legal authority to control the DOJ (and other responsibilities) she is AG. No iffs, no buts. She is AG. This isn't a chair warming position. Until the senate confirmes a new permanent appointment, the person in the acting role is legally the person occupying that position. Given the current politics playing out, it could be months before the new AG is confirmed. The country needs running. If POTUS calls a cabinet meeting, everyone in the cabinet turns up. Including those that are in acting roles. The acting members turn up, not the yet to be confirmed nominated members.

bob++
01-31-2017, 05:42 AM
Considering the length of time between election and taking the post, why is it that a US President does not have a full team, ready to go, on Jan 20th?

In the UK, an incoming PM appoints the key members of their cabinet the day after the election.

Francis Vaughan
01-31-2017, 06:21 AM
Considering the length of time between election and taking the post, why is it that a US President does not have a full team, ready to go, on Jan 20th?

In the UK, an incoming PM appoints the key members of their cabinet the day after the election.

Because they are subject to senate confirmation. More interestingly, nobody can be appointed by the president to an acting position if they are then nominated to the senate for confirmation as the substantive appointee. Keeping the previous incumbent of the position in place clearly simplifies things. They are really only acting in the sense that they will be replaced by whichever nominee of POTUS the senate finally accepts. They have actually been nominated and accepted by the senate. Just possibly under a different regime. "Interim" would be a better word than "acting."

The nitpick is that the UK PM does not appoint ministers. The PM recommends to the monarch those members of parliament that should be appointed as ministers. There is every chance that some desired cabinet ministers didn't get re-elected. They can't be appointed in the UK. Under a Westminster system all ministers, including the PM, are appointed by the monarch or the monarch's representative.

The US executive is composed of people who are not members of the legislature. In principle there is a critical difference. Westminster system ministers are elected representatives of the people. In the US, they can be any bozo the POTUS nominates. The elected representatives of the people in the form of the senate feel the need to vet them. Of course IRL, things get a bit more messy.

Novelty Bobble
01-31-2017, 07:11 AM
There is every chance that some desired cabinet ministers didn't get re-elected. They can't be appointed in the UK. .

not true, cabinet members can come from the Lords or hold no legislative position at all.

Peter Mandelson was brought into the Brown cabinet when he was no longer an MP or a peer.

You could theoretically make anyone a peer and then appoint them to a cabinet position.
Rare, but possible.

D18
01-31-2017, 07:36 AM
SNIP

I remember hearing that when Janet Reno, when Clinton was re-elected, refused to submit her resignation, which Clinton was expecting, and was prepared to accept. She basically said "if you want to get rid of me, you've got to fire me," and Clinton decided that it wasn't worth it to fire her.

Does anyone have any details on this affair?

SNIP



(Bolding mine)

I don't know whether this is a poor choice of words or whether it warrants a well-deserved golf-clap! :D

Francis Vaughan
01-31-2017, 09:16 AM
not true, cabinet members can come from the Lords or hold no legislative position at all.


:smack: Of course. I keep forgetting the UK is a bit different to the rest of us. Here in Oz you need to be elected to the upper house - not simply born to it or appointed. (And Queensland doesn't even have an upper house at all.)

Elevation to a peerage as a way of making it possible to appoint someone not otherwise elected seems to have a bit of history (not just Mandelson) but it is rare. None the less, you can't be a member of cabinet without being a member of one house or the other.

Northern Piper
01-31-2017, 09:26 AM
You can in Canada, as a matter of law, be appointed to Cabinet without being in either house. However, if you're not appointed to the Senate, there is a strong constitutional convention that you get yourself into the Commons as quickly as possible by a by-election. If you don't get into the Commons reasonably quickly you have to resign from Cabinet, as was the case with the Defence Minister in WWII, Andrew McNaughton, who failed to win a seat in either a by-eleciton or a general election.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 10:34 AM
Do you accept your own citation?

The article lists the Acting Cabinet members as members of the Cabinet, so yes.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 11:15 AM
The article lists the Acting Cabinet members as members of the Cabinet, so yes.I guess I should have been more specific not to allow for weaseling: Do you accept this statement in the article you cited?

"All Cabinet members are nominated by the President and then presented to the Senate for confirmation or rejection by a simple majority."

Giles
01-31-2017, 11:19 AM
You can in Canada, as a matter of law, be appointed to Cabinet without being in either house. ...
You can in Australia too, but subject to s. 64 of the Constitution:
... After the first general election no Minister of State shall hold office for a longer period than three months unless he is or becomes a senator or a member of the House of Representatives.
As far as I can remember, since that first general election, the only person to be appointed as a minister without being a member of the Parliament was John Gorton, who was a senator when appointed as Prime Minister in 1968 (following the disappearance of Harold Holt), but resigned as a senator to stand for election to Holt's seat in the House. Thus he was a Minister for about 3 weeks without being either a senator or MHR.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 11:19 AM
I guess I should have been more specific not to allow for weaseling: Do you accept this statement in the article you cited?

I accept the listing of the Acting Cabinet members as Cabinet members.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 11:22 AM
I guess I should have been more specific not to allow for weaseling: Do you accept this statement in the article you cited?

Why do you accept that statement as being authoritative but not the rest of the article?

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 11:24 AM
I accept the listing of the Acting Cabinet members as Cabinet members.I see. Maybe you shouldn't cite articles that contradict what you're claiming then.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 11:25 AM
Why do you accept that statement as being authoritative but not the rest of the article?I accept that the article is contradictory (and as I said before, it is Wikipedia, thus not authoritative at all). You are really trying to ignore that.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 11:33 AM
I accept that the article is contradictory (and as I said before, it is Wikipedia, thus not authoritative at all). You are really trying to ignore that.

So are you. You cite one part as authoritative but not the other.

Shodan
01-31-2017, 11:39 AM
The Wiki cite also says There is no explicit definition of the term "Cabinet" in the United States Constitution, the United States Code, or the Code of Federal Regulations so this is just dickering about semantics. Trump kept the last AG around while his own AG got confirmed. She decided she wasn't going to carry out his policies, so he fired her.

Regards,
Shodan

Really Not All That Bright
01-31-2017, 11:39 AM
I accept that the article is contradictory (and as I said before, it is Wikipedia, thus not authoritative at all). You are really trying to ignore that.
Do you have any evidence that an acting department head does not exercise the full powers of the office during her tenure?

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 11:47 AM
Do you have any evidence that an acting department head does not exercise the full powers of the office during her tenure?That's not relevant to whether she's Trump's "Cabinet member". Yes, since she was acting AG, she formally had "full powers of the office" (subject to being fired of course). Informally, temporary acting AGs (and other temporary acting Secretaries) do not involve themselves in any controversial decisions, precisely because they are not Cabinet members. And if they did, they'd be rightly summarily fired and replaced with another temporary replacement, which is exactly what happened in this case.

Chefguy
01-31-2017, 11:50 AM
I accept that the article is contradictory (and as I said before, it is Wikipedia, thus not authoritative at all). You are really trying to ignore that.

Hypothetical: if Trump had decided to keep on ALL of Obama's appointees as his permanent department heads, would you still claim that they weren't his cabinet members?

Colibri
01-31-2017, 11:55 AM
That's not relevant to whether she's Trump's "Cabinet member".

You appear to be bickering over semantics. Even if Trump did not appoint her as AG, she's still serving as AG under Trump. That makes her a member of Trump's cabinet.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 12:01 PM
Hypothetical: if Trump had decided to keep on ALL of Obama's appointees as his permanent department heads, would you still claim that they weren't his cabinet members?They would be, since they were confirmed by the Senate to those positions. Yates wasn't.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 12:03 PM
You appear to be bickering over semantics. Even if Trump did not appoint her as AG, she's still serving as AG under Trump. That makes her a member of Trump's cabinet.No, what makes someone a Cabinet member is being confirmed by the Senate to be one. A President cannot appoint someone to be a Cabinet member without Senate confirming that member to that position.

friedo
01-31-2017, 12:06 PM
No, what makes someone a Cabinet member is being confirmed by the Senate to be one. A President cannot appoint someone to be a Cabinet member without Senate confirming that member to that position.

Where, precisely, does this specific definition of "Cabinet member" arise?

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 12:16 PM
Where, precisely, does this specific definition of "Cabinet member" arise?
The Constitution

"...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"

Cabinet members are both "public Ministers" and "Officers of the United States". Thus they require "the Advice and Consent of the Senate". Without such "Advice and Consent", they are not Cabinet members.

Casey1505
01-31-2017, 12:18 PM
Trumps own website makes no distinction between acting and not acting.

https://whitehouse.gov/administration/cabinet
The Cabinet includes the Vice President and the heads of 15 executive departments — the Secretaries of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Labor, State, Transportation, Treasury, and Veterans Affairs, as well as the Attorney General. --bolding mine

friedo
01-31-2017, 12:36 PM
Cabinet members are both "public Ministers" and "Officers of the United States". Thus they require "the Advice and Consent of the Senate". Without such "Advice and Consent", they are not Cabinet members.

Was Sally Yates appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate? What about Dana Boente?

Colibri
01-31-2017, 12:40 PM
Without such "Advice and Consent", they are not Cabinet members.

In your unsupported opinion.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 12:41 PM
Was Sally Yates appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate? What about Dana Boente?Sally Yates was appointed to her Deputy position with the advice and consent of the Senate. She was not appointed to the AG position with the advice and consent of the Senate. Neither was Dana Boente. Neither of them are (or were) Cabinet members.

You can't take the advice and consent of the Senate for one position and transfer it to another. If that was possible, then Trump could just take a federal judge that passed the advice and consent of the Senate for his federal judge position and transfer him to the Supreme Court.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 12:44 PM
In your unsupported opinion.

It is elementary logic.

1. Are Cabinet members "public Ministers" or "Officers of the United States" or both?

2. Does the Constitution require "public Ministers" and "Officers of the United States" be subject to Senate's "advice and consent"?

3. Has Yates been subject to such "advice and consent"?

QED.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 12:58 PM
It is elementary logic.

Logic has nothing to do with the Federal government.;)

You're still going to need an actual cite for your position.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 01:08 PM
Logic has nothing to do with the Federal government.;)

You're still going to need an actual cite for your position.

I gave it above. It's the Constitution.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 01:16 PM
I gave it above. It's the Constitution.

Your personal interpretation of the Constitution. Sorry, that's not a cite.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 01:20 PM
Your personal interpretation of the Constitution. Sorry, that's not a cite.
It is mine and yours and everyone's. Here are the questions you didn't answer. Would you like to? Or will you refuse to?

1. Are Cabinet members "public Ministers" or "Officers of the United States" or both?

2. Does the Constitution require "public Ministers" and "Officers of the United States" be subject to Senate's "advice and consent"?

3. Has Yates been subject to such "advice and consent"?

friedo
01-31-2017, 01:22 PM
You can't take the advice and consent of the Senate for one position and transfer it to another. If that was possible, then Trump could just take a federal judge that passed the advice and consent of the Senate for his federal judge position and transfer him to the Supreme Court.

I don't think that's a workable analogy, since there is no statutory authorization for succession in the case of Supreme Court justices.

But there is a statutory succession plan in place for the Department of Justice, which specifies which officers become Acting AG in the case of a vacancy. When those officers were appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate, was the Senate not also consenting to their potentially becoming Acting AG, and therefore a Cabinet officer, in the event of a vacancy?

Colibri
01-31-2017, 01:44 PM
It is mine and yours and everyone's. Here are the questions you didn't answer. Would you like to? Or will you refuse to?

This really isn't the place for a debate. If you are unable to provide a cite for your position, you are free to start a thread in Great Debates where you can propound your personal constitutional theories.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 02:02 PM
This really isn't the place for a debate. If you are unable to provide a cite for your position, you are free to start a thread in Great Debates where you can propound your personal constitutional theories.
Ah refusal to answer. As I expected.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 02:08 PM
Ah refusal to answer. As I expected.

You still haven't provided a cite.;)

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 02:09 PM
I don't think that's a workable analogy, since there is no statutory authorization for succession in the case of Supreme Court justices.

But there is a statutory succession plan in place for the Department of Justice, which specifies which officers become Acting AG in the case of a vacancy. When those officers were appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate, was the Senate not also consenting to their potentially becoming Acting AG, and therefore a Cabinet officer, in the event of a vacancy?No, since, if the President wants the acting AG to continue as a permanent AG, the "advice and consent" of the Senate is AFAIU still required.

Enola Gay
01-31-2017, 02:38 PM
You still haven't provided a cite.;)

His flawed interpretation of the Constitution is his cite :rolleyes:

friedo
01-31-2017, 02:45 PM
No, since, if the President wants the acting AG to continue as a permanent AG, the "advice and consent" of the Senate is AFAIU still required.

It is true that the president must obtain new advice and consent if he wants to appoint a new AG. But there is no requirement that he do so in any hurry. Past presidents have left acting officers in charge for lengthy periods. As an example, Hershel Gober served as Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs for over a year, split between two occasions. Currently, the Vacancies Reform Act of 1998 allows Senate-confirmed junior officers to serve as acting department heads for up to 300 days in the event of a presidential transition.

In the event of a non-transition vacancy, there is a statutory succession order which includes no time limit. While they are an acting secretary, they have full authority over their departments, provide advice to the president, attend Cabinet meetings, testify before Congress, and do all the other things a federal department head is expected to do.

It is traditional, though not legally required, that acting secretaries not make major decisions or policy changes. But they are certainly able to if they want.

I can find no justification, either legal or traditional, for relegating acting department heads to some second-class category.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 03:07 PM
It is true that the president must obtain new advice and consent if he wants to appoint a new AG. But there is no requirement that he do so in any hurry.Which has nothing to do with the principle that to be a Cabinet member you have to be confirmed by the Senate for the position. It's right there in the Constitution, as I explained, point by point.

Colibri
01-31-2017, 03:10 PM
Which has nothing to do with the principle that to be a Cabinet member you have to be confirmed by the Senate for the position. It's right there in the Constitution, as I explained, point by point.

Once again, you haven't provided any cite beyond your personal opinion.

Really Not All That Bright
01-31-2017, 03:35 PM
That's not relevant to whether she's Trump's "Cabinet member".
Okay, so if you want to keep this narrow, who appointed her to the position of Acting Attorney General?

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 03:44 PM
Okay, so if you want to keep this narrow, who appointed her to the position of Acting Attorney General?Trump. But as the Constitution requires, in order to be a Cabinet member, she needs to be confirmed by the Senate. If Trump wanted her to be a Cabinet member, he'd submit her to the confirmation by the Senate.

As I pointed out in the 3 points above, confirmation by the Senate is a requirement to be a Cabinet member. I am not sure why you all are arguing with that. It's right there in the Constitution.

Saint Cad
01-31-2017, 03:54 PM
The Wiki cite also says so this is just dickering about semantics. Trump kept the last AG around while his own AG got confirmed. She decided she wasn't going to carry out his policies, so he fired her.


That's the key point. It's not like she fell into the position and he replaced her for the interim. He asked her to stay on as acting AG and as such she was a member of his cabinet.

Saint Cad
01-31-2017, 04:09 PM
No, what makes someone a Cabinet member is being confirmed by the Senate to be one. A President cannot appoint someone to be a Cabinet member without Senate confirming that member to that position.

Not really. They merely have to advise and consent. If the Senate were to pass a rule "Upon a vacancy in a cabinet position, the Assistant Secretary shall assume that position until filled through nomination and confirmation." I would argue that they pre-emptively gave their advice and consent to filling the position with that person.


3. Has Yates been subject to such "advice and consent"?
Yes through the Senate's majority vote on the controlling law

Jack Batty
01-31-2017, 04:24 PM
I can't believe how much effort is being put into, "nuh-uh, she was not on Trump's cabinet!" It's reminiscent of Trump flipping out because his inauguration crowd was so small. "Nuh-uh, it was too the biggest crowd ever!"

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 04:26 PM
Not really. They merely have to advise and consent. If the Senate were to pass a rule "Upon a vacancy in a cabinet position, the Assistant Secretary shall assume that position until filled through nomination and confirmation." I would argue that they pre-emptively gave their advice and consent to filling the position with that person.That would be a very stretching argument. AFAIK, the "advice and consent" has been consistently understood to mean confirmation hearings/voting, and is not discharged by passing a law once. Basically, the "advice and consent" presumes that the current Senate does the advising and consenting, not the Senate decades ago.

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 04:27 PM
I can't believe how much effort is being put into, "nuh-uh, she was not on Trump's cabinet!" It's reminiscent of Trump flipping out because his inauguration crowd was so small. "Nuh-uh, it was too the biggest crowd ever!"
The only effort you see is here on this thread, and it's because I consider it an interesting (if pretty irrelevant) point.

Where else do you see this effort?

Jack Batty
01-31-2017, 04:38 PM
Oh, you're providing plenty. Keep up the good work, Sisyphus.

friedo
01-31-2017, 04:55 PM
Which has nothing to do with the principle that to be a Cabinet member you have to be confirmed by the Senate for the position. It's right there in the Constitution, as I explained, point by point.

Except it isn't. The Constitution does not define the term cabinet or cabinet member. It refers in Article II § 2 to "the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments" and again in the 25th Amendment to "principal officers of the executive departments."

One might argue that "cabinet" is simply a synonym for "principal officers of the executive departments." But that is also incorrect, since by longstanding tradition, the Cabinet also includes the Vice President.

Your definition of qualification for the Cabinet also excludes recess appointments, which the Constitution specifically exempts from Senate confirmation, and who are not considered Acting appointments at all.

Let's ignore the issue of statutory succession for the moment and focus on transitionary appointments. The governing statute is the Federal Vacancies Reform Act that I mentioned above. That act provides, in part


(a) If an officer of an Executive agency (including the Executive Office of the President, and other than the Government Accountability Office) whose appointment to office is required to be made by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, dies, resigns, or is otherwise unable to perform the functions and duties of the office—
...
(2) ... the President (and only the President) may direct a person who serves in an office for which appointment is required to be made by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, to perform the functions and duties of the vacant office temporarily in an acting capacity subject to the time limitations of section 3346;



(a) Except in the case of a vacancy caused by sickness, the person serving as an acting officer as described under section 3345 may serve in the office—
(1) for no longer than 210 days beginning on the date the vacancy occurs;
[b](irrelevent details snipped)



(b) With respect to any vacancy that exists during the 60-day period beginning on a transitional inauguration day, the 210-day period under section 3346 or 3348 shall be deemed to begin on the later of the date occurring—
(1) 90 days after such transitional inauguration day; or
(2) 90 days after the date on which the vacancy occurs.


In other words, the Congress in their wisdom has delegated to the President the power to appoint acting officers to vacant principal executive positions when making a presidential transition. The only requirements are

1. That the appointment be made from the pool of subordinates whose appointment previously required the consent of the Senate, and

2. That the appointment not last longer than 210 + 90 days from the inauguration.

The Senate, by agreeing to this legislation, has implicitly granted their consent to the temporary appointment of principal officers subject to these conditions, by virtue of having previously provided their consent to the appointment of the subordinate officers who so qualify.

Neither the Constitution nor any federal law makes any distinction between "principal officers of the executive departments" and "acting principal officers of the executive departments." Neither the Constitution nor any federal law or regulation establishes the Cabinet, defines the term "cabinet member" or "cabinet officer." It is clear that the structure and functioning of the Cabinet is entirely informal and traditional, and completely at the discretion of the President.

It is also clear that, subject to the time-limit conditions outlined above, there is no legal difference between a Secretary of Foo and an Acting Secretary of Foo. To the extent that we can legitimately define "cabinet member" as "the department heads plus the Vice President, plus whomever else the President may stick in that little room," any Acting Secretary clearly qualifies.

Enola Gay
01-31-2017, 05:15 PM
Which has nothing to do with the principle that to be a Cabinet member you have to be confirmed by the Senate for the position. It's right there in the Constitution, as I explained, point by point.

She WAS confirmed by the Senate 84-12

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 06:09 PM
She WAS confirmed by the Senate 84-12Not to that position. The "advice and consent" is non-transferable from position to position.

Casey1505
01-31-2017, 06:31 PM
George W. Bush had three "acting" cabinet members at one time (http://nytimes.com/2007/10/15/washington/15interim.html). Seemed perfectly legal.

puzzlegal
01-31-2017, 06:49 PM
Not to that position. The "advice and consent" is non-transferable from position to position.

Except that it seems it can be, and routinely is, during transitions. And that

1. That the appointment be made from the pool of subordinates whose appointment previously required the consent of the Senate, and
means that they were appointed with the advise and consent of the senate.

I read somewhere that it might get awkward, because so many of the senate-approved officials have left that Trump wouldn't have many people to choose from.

Loach
01-31-2017, 07:58 PM
Acting cabinet members have to stay in the hall and shout their advice through the open doorway during cabinet meetings.

friedo
01-31-2017, 08:48 PM
Not to that position. The "advice and consent" is non-transferable from position to position.

If it helps, think of it this way.

The position of, say, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, is defined, legally, as an appointment which requires the consent of the Senate and one which may serve as Acting Secretary of the department according to the terms of the Vacancies Reform Act.

When the Senate grants their consent to an appointment to that position, they are saying, "we approve Bob Lobb for the position of Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, whose duties may also include acting as the Secretary of State in accordance with current legislation." They don't explicitly say all that, but it's implied, since the duties of statutory executive positions are largely defined by their department's enabling legislation and other laws (including the FVRA.)

So the Senate is well aware that they are voting to confirm someone who may be called upon by a President to act as the department head for some time. The Senate, understandably, does not want people acting indefinitely, since they generally want to be more rigorous about confirming top-level officials. That's why the FVRA was passed, to make it clear that an under secretary may only exercise the power of a department head for a limited time.

All of that, however, is ultimately immaterial to whether or not an acting secretary is a "cabinet member." The only authority that defines "cabinet member" is the President. And historically, the Cabinet has included acting department heads. That was true when Washington appointed the first Cabinet and it's true today. There is no reason to suspect that this will change anytime in the future (though given Trump's surprise re-org of the NSC, anything is possible.)

HMS Irruncible
01-31-2017, 09:02 PM
"All Cabinet members are nominated by the President and then presented to the Senate for confirmation or rejection by a simple majority."
I know I'll regret stepping in to point out the obvious, but the above statement does not in any way read as "Cabinet members stop being cabinet members when the Presidency changes hands."

But even if we take your definition, you're still wrong on the facts. because Yates served at the request of the Trump administration. (http://politico.com/story/2017/01/trump-us-attorneys-233740)
"Upon the request of the incoming Administration, Deputy Attorney General Sally Q. Yates has agreed to serve as Acting Attorney General until a successor has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate, effective at noon Friday, January 20, 2017," Hornbuckle said.

(bolding mine).

Northern Piper
01-31-2017, 11:10 PM
Checking in to see if still debating about what the meaning of "is" is.

Still are.

Checking out. ;)

Okrahoma
01-31-2017, 11:21 PM
I know I'll regret stepping in to point out the obvious, but the above statement does not in any way read as "Cabinet members stop being cabinet members when the Presidency changes hands."I didn't say that, did I? Gates served as Sec. of Defense without having to be confirmed again.
But even if we take your definition, you're still wrong on the facts. because Yates served at the request of the Trump administration. (http://politico.com/story/2017/01/trump-us-attorneys-233740)


(bolding mine).I never said she didn't, so I cannot be "wrong" on that fact. I said she was not confirmed to that position by the Senate.

What the .... ?!?!
02-01-2017, 06:34 AM
Had she not been fired, and had Trump wanted to keep her for four years, would she have to be confirmed?

Okrahoma
02-01-2017, 08:43 AM
Had she not been fired, and had Trump wanted to keep her for four years, would she have to be confirmed?
Yes.

Casey1505
02-01-2017, 09:19 AM
...since the intention is to remove "acting" from her title. The 300 day limit would still apply, wouldn't it?

Saint Cad
02-01-2017, 11:01 AM
That would be a very stretching argument. AFAIK, the "advice and consent" has been consistently understood to mean confirmation hearings/voting, and is not discharged by passing a law once. Basically, the "advice and consent" presumes that the current Senate does the advising and consenting, not the Senate decades ago.

If you read carefully I said it would be a rule not a law. And Senate Rules are re-approved every session so on January 3rd this Senate would have approved that rule had it existed.

Catamount
02-01-2017, 01:19 PM
What's the difference between "fired" and "forced to resign?"

Saint Cad
02-01-2017, 03:54 PM
What's the difference between "fired" and "forced to resign?"

A lot if Cabinet members get to collect unemployment.

Really Not All That Bright
02-03-2017, 09:51 AM
Had she not been fired, and had Trump wanted to keep her for four years, would she have to be confirmed?
Yes.
Yes and no. He could have kept her in office indefinitely by putting up a nominee who the Senate rejected. He'd have 120 days to nominate someone, then another 120 days to nominate someone else after the Senate vote.

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