Chester A. Arthur

Special Message

March 01, 1883

To the Senate of the United States:

Having approved the act recently passed by Congress "to regulate and improve the civil service of the United States," I deem it my duty to call your attention to the provision for the employment of a "chief examiner" contained in the third section of the act, which was the subject of consideration at the time of its approval.

I am advised by the Attorney-General that there is great doubt whether such examiner is not properly an officer of the United States because of the nature of his employment, its duration, emolument, and duties. If he be such, the provision for his employment (which involves an appointment by the Commission) is not in conformity with section 2, Article II of the Constitution. Assuming this to be the case, the result would be that the appointment of the chief examiner must be deemed to be vested in the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, since in such case the appointment would not be otherwise provided for by law. Concurring in this opinion, I nominate Silas W. Burr, of New York, to be chief examiner of the Civil Service Commission.


Chester A. Arthur, Special Message Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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