December 14, 2009
[efoods]A constitutional scholar says President Obama’s acceptance of the Nobel Peace Prize may be a violation of the U.S. Constitution because he received the award without the consent of Congress.
Last Thursday, Barack Obama accepted the Nobel Peace Prize Oslo, Norway. He is the third sitting president, after Woodrow Wilson and Theodore Roosevelt, to win the award. While controversy swirled around the award being granted to a wartime president, Matthew Spalding with The Heritage Foundation is concerned about the constitutionality of Obama’s acceptance of the Nobel Prize.
A clause in Article I, Section 9 of the U.S. Constitution states: “No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office or Trust under them, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign state.” That raises a question: Is the Nobel Peace Prize an “Emolument” — a gift arising from one’s office which includes some sort of monetary award with it?