News

John Boehner says he’s suing the President

John Boehner says he’s suing the President

LAWSUIT:John Boehner (left) said the suit from the House of Representatives was aimed at protecting the rights of Congress under the constitution and said Obama was ignoring the laws that it passes. Photo: Associated Press

By David Lawder and David Ingram

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republican House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner said on Wednesday he plans to sue President Barack Obama, accusing him of abusing his authority by going around Congress to implement his policy agenda.

The suit, to be filed by the House of Representatives later this summer, takes issue with executive actions Obama has taken on issues ranging from healthcare to energy to foreign policy, Boehner said. But he declined to be specific about which administration actions he would challenge.

“The Constitution makes it clear that the president’s job is to faithfully execute the law. In my view, the president has not faithfully executed the law,” Boehner told reporters.

In a memo to Republican lawmakers, the speaker said Obama’s actions risked giving the president a “king-like authority” at the expense of U.S. voters and Congress.

Obama has increasingly used executive orders this year to advance his agenda in the face of a gridlocked Congress. He raised the minimum wage for federal contractors and stopped the deportation of young people brought to the United States illegally by their parents. Obama also recently extended family leave rights nationwide to workers in same-sex marriages, and barred contractors from discriminating against gay employees.

Boehner’s memo said he will bring legislation to a floor vote in July authorizing the House general counsel to file the suit. The case would take months to work its way through the courts, but it would give Republicans new fodder to try to sway voters in the November congressional elections.

“I think Speaker Boehner is being a very effective advertisement for the Republican Party,” said John Hudak, a governance studies fellow at the Brookings Institution. “He’s playing to his base.”

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Obama had “solid legal rationale” for his actions and added Congress should work with the administration instead of taking it to court.

“The fact that they are considering a taxpayer-funded lawsuit against the president of the United States for doing his job, I think is the kind of step that most Americans wouldn’t support,” Earnest said.

Legal experts said U.S. courts are generally reluctant to wade into what they perceive as political fights between Congress and the White House.

Stanley Brand, who served as the House’s general counsel under the late Democratic House Speaker Tip O’Neill, said a narrowly focused suit has a better chance of success, particularly when it comes to Supreme Court review.

A suit as broad as the one envisioned by Boehner would face skepticism from judges, Brand said.

“They’re not referees of political disputes, they’re arbiters of concrete action,” he said. “The courts are not going to supervise a president that way. I don’t want to say it’s harebrained, but it’s close to it.”

(Additional reporting by Roberta Rampton, David Ingram and Jeff Mason, writing by David Lawder; Editing by Caren Bohan and xxxxx)

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

‘Empire’ co-stars reportedly engaged

Fresh
gracegealey

Trai Byers and Grace Gealey are reportedly engaged to be married just months after reports of their off-screen romance surfaced.

in Entertainment

Melissa McCarthy producing TV series about her rise to fame

Fresh
melissamccarthybenfalcone

"Friends With Melissa" is inspired by the "Bridesmaids" star's early years as a comedian and writer.

in Entertainment

Griswolds back on the road for family trip in ‘Vacation’

13-overlay17

More than 30 years after his father took him on a road trip to Walley World in "National Lampoon's Vacation,",Rusty Griswold is back with his own family-bonding plans.

in Sports

Spieth may be the best putter ever, says Poulter

spieth

U.S. Masters and U.S. Open champion Jordan Spieth could go down as the greatest putter golf has ever seen.