The Pay Czar is Unconstitutional


  • Michael McConnell
Publish Date:
October 30, 2009
Publication Title:
Wall Street Journal, October 30, 2009, pg. A25
Op-Ed or Opinion Piece
  • Michael W. McConnell, The Pay Czar is Unconstitutional: Kenneth Feinberg Hasn't Been Confirmed by the Senate, Wall Street Journal, October 30, 2009, pg. A25.
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Last week’s announcement that “Pay Czar” Kenneth Feinberg slashed compensation for executives at seven large financial firms by an average of 50% stunned Wall Street, stoked the fires of populist resentment, and troubled economists. Will this government-mandated pay cut drive the most talented professionals away from these companies, endangering their recovery? Does it augur further politicization of economic decisions?

Lost in the arguments over economics and political theory, however, is a more basic question: Was this action constitutional?