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Presidential Appointment Efficiency and Streamlining Act of 2011

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. GOHMERT. Mr. Speaker, with due deference to my friend from New York and my friend from Utah--and I do mean that literally--I rise in opposition to this bill.

What we've seen over the last year and a half is a Presidency that had the most disdain for Congress in the confirmation process of any President I'm aware of, and I'm quite familiar with the history of the United States.

Not only has this President made recess appointments when there was no recess, not only has this President appointed czars that were beyond the reach of Congress--although we could have made it within our reach; we could have just cut off every dime for anything that did not come before congressional approval--but with this latest tactic of having a recess appointment when there wasn't a recess, all of the talk across the country about the appointing of czars with no accountability to the Senate, I really did expect some of my conservative friends in the Senate at some point to move a bill on this subject. I expected it to be a bill that would send a loud and clear message to the President that, if you feel like some of these don't need to be appointed, you come talk to us about it, and let's talk about no more recess appointments. Let's talk about some of these others.

Instead, it's almost a pat on the back to the President to say, Look, you've ignored us; you've made us irrelevant. You've done all of these things, as you've said, Congress won't act so you're going to act. The President has gone out and made speeches like the king or Caesar: as I speak, so it is the law.

And even though Congress has duly passed immigration laws that the President has stood up, and as he spoke, he made law and ignored Congress completely. The message we're sending back here is: Mr. President--as in some old movie--thank you, may I have another. Look, you just keep ignoring us, and we'll keep making ourselves more and more irrelevant.

I would like to make one other point, too. Here we are in a desperate situation where our military, our very national security is at risk for being cut to the extent that we will no longer be secure. I would humbly submit that a better bill would be, Mr. President, if these are not all that important, let's get rid of all of these. There are board members. There's commissions. I mean, there's things in here, there's a director of the Women's Bureau. I don't see one for the Men's Bureau. There's director of all kinds of things here that it just seems like are redundant, that could be done away with. If they're not important enough for the Senate to take a look at them, Mr. Speaker, I would humbly suggest that maybe they're irrelevant and immaterial enough that we just do away with the positions. And accordingly, I would urge my colleagues to vote ``no'' on this provision.


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