Hearing This Week in Lawsuit Challenging Hillary Clinton’s Constitutional Eligibility for Secretary of State

Challenge Filed on Behalf of State Department Foreign Service officer — Court Hearing Set for September 16, 2009

Contact Information:
Press Office 202-646-5172, ext 305

Washington, DC — September 14, 2009

Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, announced today that a lawsuit challenging the constitutional eligibility of Hillary Clinton to be Secretary of State (Rodearmel v. Clinton, et al., (D. District of Columbia)) will be heard by a special three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia:

Date:  Wednesday, September 16
Time:  9:30 AM ET
Location: Courtroom 22A
The E. Barrett Prettyman Federal Courthouse
333 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20001

At issue is Hillary Clinton’s constitutional ineligibility to serve as Secretary of State. Article I, section 6 of the U.S. Constitution provides:

“No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the Emoluments whereof shall have been encreased during such time.”

This provision, known as the “Emoluments” or “Ineligibility” clause is an absolute prohibition and does not allow for any exceptions. The “Ineligibility Clause” is interpreted by most as designed by our Founding Fathers to protect against corruption, limit the size of government, and ensure the separation of powers among the three branches of government.

On January 29, 2009, Judicial Watch filed a lawsuit on the grounds that Mrs. Clinton is constitutionally ineligible to serve as Secretary of State under the Ineligibility Clause. The “emoluments” or salary of the U.S. Secretary of State increased at least three times during Mrs. Clinton’s most recent U.S. Senate term. That term, which began on January 4, 2007, does not expire until January 2013, regardless of Mrs. Clinton’s resignation.

The Judicial Watch lawsuit is on behalf of Foreign Service Officer and State Department employee David Rodearmel. The lawsuit maintains that Mr. Rodearmel cannot serve under Secretary of State Clinton as it would force him to violate an oath he took as a Foreign Service Officer in 1991 to “support and defend” and “bear true faith and allegiance” to the Constitution of the United States.

“Our goal is to vindicate the U.S. Constitution,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “The Constitution clearly prohibits Hillary Clinton from serving as Secretary of State until 2013. We hope the court puts a stop to this attempt to do an end-run around the Constitution in the name of political expediency.”

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