WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court is refereeing a politically charged dispute between President Barack Obama and Senate Republicans over the president's power to temporarily fill high-level positions.

The case being argued at the high court Monday is the first ever to consider the meaning of the Constitution's provision that lets the president make temporary appointments to positions that otherwise require Senate confirmation - but only when the Senate is in recess.

The court battle is an outgrowth of increasing partisanship and the political stalemate that's been a hallmark of Washington for years, and especially since Obama took office in 2009.

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