Myers v. United States


A post-master, a position within the executive branch of government, was fired by Woodrow Wilson.  A law that passed prior to the removal of Myers stated that post-masters shall be removed from office by the President and “with advice and consent of the Senate.”  Myers argued that without Senate consent he was illegally fired.  The Senate specifically dissented from Myers’ firing.


Whether constitutional silence on the issue of executive branch dismissals renders and Act which requires Senate approval for dismissal invalid.


No, the Tenure of Office Act of 1867 is invalid.  The Act is invalid as long as it applies to positions that were appointed and eventually approved by the Senate.  The court examined constitutional notes to reach the opinion that the President had the exclusive power to remove staff position because they were extensions of the executive himself.  The notion that the Senate can disapprove of a removal of an executive branch position violates the separation of powers doctrine.  Maintaining such a power for the Senate would in effect allow the Senate to control the staffing of the executive branch, for instance.

Leave a Reply