“Obama said Sue me. So we are.” Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) expressed frustration on Wednesday regarding what he described as President Obama’s willingness to sidestep Congress to write his own laws. Chaffetz joined Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) on a conference call to discuss the resolution being voted on Wednesday evening to authorize Congress to sue the executive branch for failing to follow the constitutional separation of powers. McMorris Rodgers called it a “constitutional crisis” that Obama has bragged about, and Chaffetz said, “The President has ignored our calls for him to follow the Constitution, being brazen enough to say to us, ‘Sue me’. So we are.”
In a conference call with journalists shortly before the floor vote in the House, House Republican Conference Chair McMorris Rodgers was joined by Rep. Chaffetz to discuss the resolution authorizing the House to enter into litigation against President Obama and his failure to faithfully execute the laws passed by Congress. The Republican legislators brought up a laundry list of actions the President has taken, via executive orders and other maneuvers, to ignore the letter of the law. They stated that the most concrete example is ObamaCare, which will be the basis of the resolution.
“I want to be clear,” said McMorris Rodgers, “This isn’t about Republicans vs Democrats. This is about upholding and defending the Constitution, and protecting our form of government. The Constitution is clear, the President must faithfully execute the laws, and only the legislature has the power to create the laws. And yet time and time again the President has shown his willingness to sidestep Congress to create his own laws, and often he brags about it.”
She went on to emphasize that if Congress does not act now, there will be no stopping this President or future Presidents from creating their own laws, or choosing which laws to enforce and which to ignore.
Chaffetz praised Speaker Boehner, saying, “He’s right. The President has overstepped his bounds, and we must challenge this. When there’s a dispute between the legislative branch and the executive branch, we need to go to the judicial branch” for resolution. “It’s not personal against the President,” he said, “it’s about standing up for the coequal branch of government in the US Congress.”
The litigation will focus on ObamaCare and the employer mandate, which the representatives state the President clearly chose to rewrite, ignoring the letter of the law that was passed by Congress.
Chaffetz also listed several other issues where he believes the President has intentionally sidestepped the will of Congress, including Fast and Furious, the Taliban Five, energy regulations and a whole host of other issues. The hope is that, if the litigation regarding ObamaCare’s employer mandate is successful, it will serve as a precedent to force the President to abide by legislation passed by Congress in many other issues outside of ObamaCare.