• Boehner Intends to Sue President Obama
  • July 4, 2014
  • Law Firm: McDonald Hopkins LLC - Cleveland Office
  • On Wednesday, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) told reporters he intends to file a lawsuit against President Obama and his administration over the White House's use of executive actions.

    "The Constitution makes it clear that it's the president's job to faithfully execute the laws, and, in my view, the president hasn't faithfully executed the laws," Boehner said.

    A number of House Republicans have been calling for such a move over what they deem are impeachable offenses. When asked whether this lawsuit could lead to impeachment proceedings, Boehner said, "This is not about impeachment."

    Boehner circulated a memo to House colleagues on Wednesday explaining his reasoning. "On one matter after another during his presidency, President Obama has circumvented the Congress through executive action, creating his own laws and excusing himself from executing statutes he is sworn to enforce—at times even boasting about his willingness to do it, as if daring the American people to stop him," he wrote.

    In the letter, the speaker wrote that the Obama administration's executive actions could create a precedent that would shift "the balance of power decisively and dangerously in favor of the presidency, giving the president king-like authority at the expense of the American people and their elected legislators."

    For months, Republicans have been critical of the president's executive actions on everything from tweaking the Affordable Care Act implementation to immigration, such as Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals.

    This year, the president promised to devote more attention to actions the executive branch can take without Congress.

    Boehner plans on bringing legislation to the floor in July that would authorize the House, via the House General Counsel and the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG), to file a suit "in an effort to compel the president to follow his oath of office and faithfully execute the laws of our country." BLAG rules by majority vote and is comprised of the speaker, the House majority and minority leaders, and the majority and minority whips (meaning, three Republicans and two Democrats). That's the same group the Republican leadership used to (unsuccessfully) defend the Defense of Marriage Act, for a price tag of $2.3 million.