Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Madam Secretary, Not So Fast

There has been considerable discussion of Hillary Clinton as the new Secretary of State, but I have seen very little discussion about the fact that she may be constitutionally ineligible to be appointed to the post. Eugene Volokh has written about this at the Volokh Conspiracy and there have been references to his articles by several other pundits (Insta- and Vodka-), but I haven't heard anything about this on the TV news. The sticking point is the Emoluments Clause in Article I of the US Constitution: "No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the Emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time . . .". It will be interesting to see how the administration addresses this situation to get what it wants despite what the Constitution says.

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