Trump Threatens to Adjourn Congress to Make Appointments


Trump calls the appointment process a scam and threatens to adjourn Congress to rectify the situation.

In yet another power grab to get his way, Trump Threatens to Adjourn Congress Over Nominees

President Trump threatened to adjourn both chambers of Congress so he can appoint his nominees for key positions without confirmation by the Senate.

The Senate, which confirms a president’s nominees, has been conducting what are called pro forma sessions while lawmakers are back in their states.

No legislative business is conducted during these brief meetings, which sometimes last only a few minutes, but they technically prevent the president from making recess appointments.

If lawmakers don’t agree to adjourn and end the pro forma sessions, “I will exercise my constitutional authority to adjourn both chambers of Congress,” Mr. Trump said. “The current practice of leaving town while conducting phony pro forma sessions is a dereliction of duty that the American people cannot afford during this crisis. It’s a scam, what they do.”

The president acknowledged that the effort would likely result in a legal challenge. “We’ll see who wins,” he said.

Appointments in Question

  • Voice of America, conservative filmmaker Michael Pack, who has been blocked by Democrats.
  • Director of national intelligence
  • Nominees for positions on the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors, and in the Treasury Department and the Agriculture Department.

Need to Provoke a Disagreement

The Constitution gives the president the power to adjourn Congress in the rare circumstances of a disagreement between the two chambers over when to adjourn. In modern practice, however, Congress stays in session throughout most of the year and no president has ever exercised the authority to adjourn it.

For Mr. Trump’s strategy to work he would need the cooperation of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.), who would have to force a disagreement with the House over when to adjourn. Messrs. Trump and McConnell discussed the idea in a phone call earlier Wednesday.

Obama Tried This

Please note that Obama tried this end-run maneuver.

Flashback June 26, 2014: Supreme Court Narrows President's Recess-Appointment Powers

Settling a constitutional showdown over presidential power, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled Thursday that President Barack Obama exceeded his authority in making temporary appointments to the National Labor Relations Board during a brief Senate break in 2012.

And what did Republicans have to say about the battle then?

Republicans have accused Mr. Obama of overreaching in his use of executive powers to carry out his agenda despite opposition in Congress. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) called the ruling "a clear rebuke of the administration's behavior."

The Senate's official historian, Donald Ritchie, said the ruling settles a question that has long been in dispute between the executive and legislative branches. "The Supreme Court for the first time has really defined what the recess is," he said.

"It's not going to be easy for the president to make recess appointments if the Senate doesn't want him to," Mr. Ritchie said.

But in this case the Republicans have a Senate Majority.

Thus the need to provoke a disagreement with the House after which the battle will head to the Supreme Court

Then “We’ll see who wins.”


Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (28)
No. 1-13

Positions not even critical enough that there is near unanimity they need to be filled pronto, aren't critical enough to have any business existing in the first place. Give the clowns a week, then just eliminate the position altogether.


Well now. This reminds me of a comment I posted here on Feb 15. I went back and found it. Here it is again:

Let us assume that the Coronavirus turns into a Pandemic that spreads around the globe, as many here keep predicting.

This could indeed bring on a recession.

Some would assume that a recession would be bad for Trump’s re-election chances.

I think that a Pandemic and recession would be a crisis that Trump would use to his advantage.

First, to counter the economic repercussions, he would announce a variety of measures, such as:

Tax cuts, increased government spending, a rescinding of all tariffs (which will be justified because they had ”successfully” accomplished their goal of reducing the trade deficit), lower interest rates, consumer spending incentives, etc

Second, in the guise of ”defending” against the virus, Trump will allocate billions to complete his border wall to keep out the plague infected walking dead from all over the world.

He will also build numerous ”virus containment” facilities where those who are deemed likely to contract the virus will be ”concentrated” together in luxurious living quarters. These facilities will have high temperature ovens to safely burn those who succumb to the disease.

He will also form a citizens ”militia” to patrol the streets and check for proper ID. Any card carrying member of the Republican Party and the NRA will be automatically enrolled into the Trump Militia and issued a Space Force Uniform and fully operational AR15. They will roam the country “keeping the peace”.

Of course, this is also the perfect opportunity to gather up any illegal aliens, and others deemed “questionable”. They will be given the “choice” of emigrating to any country that will accept them, or a virus containment facility.

Third; Trump will use this crisis to expand the powers of the President.

He will declare a War Measures Act and “temporarily” suspend some or all of the following:

The upcoming election.

The House.

The Senate.

The Judiciary.

The Constitution.

He will use his new powers to round up all opposition, including all Democrats.

Fourth: he will take down the Statue of Liberty and replace it with a monument to himself, with his arm held high, giving a tiny finger to the rest of the world.

What do you think? Am I close?

Your friendly neighborhood Realist.


You are delusional get help


What would be the definition of, "rare circumstances of a disagreement between the two chambers"? They disagree with each other for the cameras, and the they pass spending bills (pissing money away for lobbyist's benefits).



I certainly would get rid of most of these positions.

Voice of America?

Hell, get rid of the whole thing, not just one position.

I would end the Fed too, but there has to be a plan for it. Last thing I want is for Trump or Congress to be in total charge of monetary supply.



I am trying to get an opinion from a person I believe to be a constitutional expert.


This is one of the many reasons why more and more people dislike politicians and are disillusioned with the political process.

2014 Democrats: "this is justified!" Republicans: "this is the act of a tyrant!"

Same issue...6 years later...Democrats: "this is the act of a tyrant!" Republicans: "this is justifiable."


Article 2 Section 3:

He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient; he may, on extraordinary occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them, and in case of disagreement between them, with respect to the time of adjournment,

he may adjourn them to such time as he shall think proper;

he shall receive ambassadors and other public ministers; he shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed, and shall commission all the officers of the United States.

Now as to the actual unconstitutional things like the bueraucracies of the EPA, OSHA, EEOC, Depts of Edu and Energy..., BLM, USFS.

The national parks (forests, monuments, grasslands, etc.) are unconstitutional.

Speaking of which, glad you were able to see Glacier NP before all the glaciers melted away by this year.


You don't need Congress. You don't need the Senate.

In America, you just need the members of the Committee to Reopen America. You know who they are.

Also don't forget Netanyahu and Prince MBS from Saudi Arabia. With those clowns, Trump has everyone he needs.

George Phillies
George Phillies

There is an actual power, but it is not applicable. And if he tries it, there will be real sessions, and he will discover that he is making no more appointments that need Senate approval.


A shoddy, cut-rate authoritarian...

The Committee to Reopen, announce names of members on Tuesday, "meet" on Wednesday, and announce "findings" on Thursday....

...“Some business leaders had no idea they were included until they heard that their names had been read in the Rose Garden on Tuesday night by President Trump. Some of those who had agreed to help said they received little information on what, exactly, they were signing up for. And others who were willing to connect with the White House could not participate in hastily organized conference calls on Wednesday because of scheduling conflicts and technical difficulties....

I guess it still all comes down to Javanka.


Interesting, last I saw the GOP had a 53/47 advantage in the Senate, and the Senate approves appointment, and Mitch does what Trump wants. If i see the procedures correctly the Democrats can "delay an nomination" by nearly 2 hours...

What is going on? Could it be that Trump's nominees are so "unacceptable" that even the GOP has a hard time giving them a pass, moreover, I was not aware that "so many appointees were being held back"

My guess is that "Red State" is right -- the deep state is hard a work (except not the way they think). The issue is "King Trump"


I believe that Moscow's Bitch: Mitch said: uh, no.

Global Economics