or at least getting there: The Congress passed a bill, S.J. Res. 46, lowering the Secretary of State's salary to its pre-raise levels, thus allowing Senator Hillary Clinton to be appointed to the office. I have no reason to doubt that the President will sign it. Here's the text of the bill:
Ensuring that the compensation and other emoluments attached to the office of Secretary of State are those which were in effect on January 1, 2007.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. COMPENSATION AND OTHER EMOLUMENTS ATTACHED TO THE OFFICE OF SECRETARY OF STATE.
(a) In General- The compensation and other emoluments attached to the office of Secretary of State shall be those in effect January 1, 2007, notwithstanding any increase in such compensation or emoluments after that date under any provision of law, or provision which has the force and effect of law, that is enacted or becomes effective during the period beginning at noon of January 3, 2007, and ending at noon of January 3, 2013.
(b) Civil Action and Appeal-
(1) JURISDICTION- Any person aggrieved by an action of the Secretary of State may bring a civil action in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia to contest the constitutionality of the appointment and continuance in office of the Secretary of State on the ground that such appointment and continuance in office is in violation of article I, section 6, clause 2, of the Constitution. The United States District Court for the District of Columbia shall have exclusive jurisdiction over such a civil action, without regard to the sum or value of the matter in controversy.
(2) THREE JUDGE PANEL- Any claim challenging the constitutionality of the appointment and continuance in office of the Secretary of State on the ground that such appointment and continuance in office is in violation of article I, section 6, clause 2, of the Constitution, in an action brought under paragraph (1) shall be heard and determined by a panel of three judges in accordance with section 2284 of title 28, United States Code. It shall be the duty of the district court to advance on the docket and to expedite the disposition of any matter brought under this subsection.
(A) DIRECT APPEAL TO SUPREME COURT- An appeal may be taken directly to the Supreme Court of the United States from any interlocutory or final judgment, decree, or order upon the validity of the appointment and continuance in office of the Secretary of State under article I, section 6, clause 2, of the Constitution, entered in any action brought under this subsection. Any such appeal shall be taken by a notice of appeal filed within 20 days after such judgment, decree, or order is entered.
(B) JURISDICTION- The Supreme Court shall, if it has not previously ruled on the question presented by an appeal taken under subparagraph (A), accept jurisdiction over the appeal, advance the appeal on the docket, and expedite the appeal.
(c) Effective Date- This joint resolution shall take effect at 12:00 p.m. on January 20, 2009.
I should note that, though some people think the Saxbe fix doesn't make the appointment constitutional, the bulk of recent precedent from the Legislative and Executive Branches supports its constitutionality, and the text strikes me as ambiguous on the subject. For more on this issue, including the text of the underlying constitutional provision, a bit about historical precedent, the views of some scholars, and speculation on whether the constitutionality of the appointment can be challenged in court, see here.
Related Posts (on one page):
- The Resultative Perfect
- New Justice Department Opinion on the Ineligibility Clause (Sometimes Also Called the Emoluments Clause):
- Judicial Watch Sues Over Hillary Clinton and the Emoluments Clause:
- The Saxbe Fix Is In,
- Why Isn't Vice-President-Elect Biden Affected by the Emoluments Clause?
- More on Hillary Clinton and the Emoluments Clause:
- Hillary Clinton and the Emoluments Clause: