Balkin's Stinging Response to Rotunda's Claim that Accepting Nobel Prize is Unconstitutional

October 17th, 2009

Last week I blogged about the argument that President Obama accepting the Nobel Peace Prize could possibly be unconstitutional under the Emoluments Clause. Professors Rotunda (one of my Professors at Mason) and Pham wrote a Washington Post Op-Ed chiming in on this topic.

Over at Balkinization, Jack Balkin rips this Op-Ed:

Second, I have noticed an increasing lack of seriousness among some members of the modern conservative movement. We see it in the tea party protests, in the work of talk show hosts and political commentators, but now even in the work of accomplished lawyers and intellectuals who should know better. It is one thing to disagree with a sitting president’s policies, but in our deeply polarized and poisonous political environment, an increasing number of politicians, operatives, and intellectuals now proclaim almost reflexive opposition to anything associated with President Obama or anything he does, says, or supports. Indeed, in this case, Rotunda and Pham have gone well past arguing that things that President Obama favors are unconstitutional; now they argue that things are unconstitutional because somebody wants to honor him.

via Balkinization.

Ouch. If the year was 2000-2008, I could see conservative scholars writing the same thing aboutthe liberal reaction to anything President Bush did. I suppose this is part of the natural cycle of politics.