Thursday, October 15, 2009

Obama's Nobel Is Unconstitutional?

The Washington Post has an interesting op-ed, Obama's Nobel Is Unconstitutional.

"Article I, Section 9, of the Constitution, the Emolument Clause, clearly stipulates: 'And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince or foreign State.'"

It goes on to say that sitting presidents have won it before, but for their past actions, and that Obama's prize is different because "it is intended to affect future action".

"Second, the president has indicated that he will give the prize money to charity, but that does not solve his legal problem. Giving that $1.4 million to a charity could give him a deduction that would reduce his income taxes by $500,000 -- not a nominal amount. Moreover, the money is not his to give away. It belongs to the United States: a federal statute provides that if the president accepts a 'tangible or intangible present' for more than a minimal value from any foreign government, the gift 'shall become the property of the United States'."


Anonymous said...

I was wondering why someone at Lindsey Graham's recent town hall kept shouting "Article 1, Section 9" I know.

Seems that the Justice Department should have plenty of time on its hands to look into this matter since they are clearly not going after the Bush-era Torture mavens or the Wall Street Banksters/Fraudsters.


AAM said...

Are Ronald D. Rotunda and J. Peter Pham idiots? The 1.4 million count as income if he kept it so the tax deduction for charity would get him back to even. As for their main point read this

Howard said...

I chalk it up to the same kind of academic exercise as whether McCain was allowed to be President because he wasn't born in the US. I think of course he was given the mitigating circumstances (which I won't list here) and assume because being that specific doesn't fit in a short constitution.

Karl said...

I'm not really up on how the Nobel prizes are awarded.
Whether this is an attempt of a foregin body to influence US policy (and, by extension, an indication of Obama's propensity to be influenced) is perhaps an acedemic exercise, but it seems to make sense that if the award is largely based on his actions as president, the dispostition of the monatary award should be decided by congress.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps Obama should simply refuse to accept the prize and eliminate all the Constitutional, Tax and Political problems.

I mean not only is the man going down in history as the first "black" president of the United States, he could also be the second person to refuse the Nobel Peace prize.

That would pretty much secure sainthood for him.