Perhaps you've heard. Our CongressNerds are doing the "gavel in/gavel out" thing and holding pro forma sessions trying to prevent the POTUS from making recess appointments for positions which have been vacant for months.
From Wiki: "The term pro forma is a term applied to practices or documents that are done as a pure formality, perfunctory, or seek to satisfy the minimum requirements or to conform to a convention or doctrine."
The use of the pro forma sessions to block recess appointments is new, and has been happening for months. The Senate Minority Leader, and I use the term loosely, is doing nothing about blocking the Rethuglicans from doing it because he really just doesn't want to admit that they don't want to do the hard work either.
Obama called their bluff today and made an appointment anyway after many months. This will probably stir up the usual s&^+-storm, but this may be his out:
"Legal experts agree. In fact, the lawyers who advised President Bush on recess appointments wrote that the Senate cannot use sham 'pro forma' sessions to prevent the President from exercising a constitutional power."
This is the proverbial "having and eating your cake" thing.
They don't want to get off their asses and do anything constructive, but they're sure as hell going to prevent anyone else from getting anything done.
If any of us tried to get away with just satisfying the minimum requirements in our jobs, we would be kicked to the curb. Not a bad idea ...
These people make my ass twitch.