Obama: Boehner's lawsuit is 'a stunt'
June 27th, 2014
11:44 AM ET
5 months ago

Obama: Boehner's lawsuit is 'a stunt'

(CNN) – President Barack Obama called House Speaker John Boehner's plans to file a lawsuit over the President's use of executive action "a stunt," in an interview with ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos.

"You notice that he didn't specifically say what exactly he was objecting to. I'm not going to apologize for trying to do something while they're doing nothing," the President said.

"You know, the suit is a stunt. But what I've told Speaker Boehner directly is, 'If you're really concerned about me taking too many executive actions, why don't you try getting something done through Congress?'"

The interview aired on ABC's "Good Morning America" Friday morning. It was conducted Thursday during the President's trip to Minneapolis, where Obama held a town hall meeting.

The President touted the accomplishments of his first five years in office but lamented the tone in Washington.

"What I do worry about is that right now we've got a Republican Party that seems to only care about saying no to me." Obama said.

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He repeated his frustrations about the immigration reform bill passed a year ago by the Senate that's been stalled in the House, and having to use executive action.

"The majority of American people want to see immigration reform done. We had a bipartisan bill through the Senate, and you're going to squawk if I try to fix some parts of it administratively that are within my authority while you are not doing anything?'" the President added.

Responding to Obama's comments, Boehner spokesman Michael Steel said Friday in a statement that "the American people, their elected representatives, and the Supreme Court have all expressed serious concerns about the President's failure to follow the Constitution. Dismissing them with words like, 'smidgen' or 'stunt' only reinforces their frustration."

Republicans argue that the President is breaching his constitutional power by side-stepping the legislative process. Obama has used executive actions as a way to bypass a deeply divided Congress, avoiding inaction on issues the White House has made hallmarks of the President's second term agenda.

So far, the Republican-controlled House has passed two bills aimed at curbing executive orders by the President, neither of which have gone anywhere in the Democratic-controlled Senate.

At this point in his presidency, Obama has issued less executive orders than his most recent two-term predecessors in the White House, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Ronald Reagan.

Boehner plans lawsuit against Obama over executive orders

In speaking of immigration during the interview, the President was asked about the thousands of unaccompanied children from Central America coming across the southern border. He implored their parents to not send their kids.

"Our message absolutely is, 'Don't send your children unaccompanied on trains on through a bunch of smugglers.' That is our direct message to the families in Central America. 'Do not send your children to the borders. If they do make it, they'll get sent back. More importantly, they may not make it'," he said.

CNN Senior Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh contributed to this story

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Filed under: John Boehner • President Obama
soundoff (96 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    "Obama has used executive actions as a way to bypass a deeply divided Congress, avoiding inaction on issues the White House has made hallmarks of the President's second term agenda"

    Again, it's not "bypassing" if he has the executive authority to do it. He's not 'going around" congress if it's within his authority. That's what the entire suit would be about so, even though I agree that it's meritless and a stunt, you should still be treating it as something not decided yet, instead of inherently adopting the GOP/Teatrolls' argument via the language you use.

    June 27, 2014 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  2. Lynda/Minnesota

    Oh. John Boehner is suing the President of the United States because ... well, you know - he was duly elected AS the President of the United States and Boehner wants us to think he's mentally fit to be in the position HE is in?

    Yeah. Whatever.

    The GOP is so out of control, so leaderless that it boggles the mind that they are actually ASKING people to vote for them. How utterly embarrassing this party of misfits has become: to themselves and to America.

    June 27, 2014 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  3. Silence DoGood

    "You notice that he didn't specifically say what exactly he was objecting to. I'm not going to apologize for trying to do something while they're doing nothing," the President said.
    -----------
    You are exactly correct Mr.President. A group of people pushing a policy or philosophy is politics. But a group that proposes actively defeating the working of government at any cost are no better than Anarchists. Those in the GOP doing this are the ones guilty of treason.

    June 27, 2014 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  4. Sniffit

    "At this point in his presidency, Obama has issued less executive orders than his most recent two-term predecessors in the White House, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Ronald Reagan."

    In other words, the GOP/Teatrolls are just mad that the POTUS has power when the POTUS is a black dude refusing to do as he's told. It IS that simple.

    June 27, 2014 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  5. Andrew

    1. Obama has signed less than other presidents
    2. If Boehner didn't preside over the most useless congress in history, Obama wouldn't have to circumvent them.

    June 27, 2014 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  6. carlos

    So now we're going to have 50+ attempts to impeach the president? We now know the agenda for the next two years.

    June 27, 2014 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  7. Tommy G

    The Obama administration has repeatedly been slapped down and embarrased by the USSC with many 9-0 decisions against them. It is very clear at this point that this supposed constitutional law professor doesn't have a clue about the Constitution. I gues we now know why Obama will never release his academic information. His failures on every front tell us alll we need to know. Too bad the country has had to suffer through this nightmare for 8 years though. And the damage he has done, both here and abraod, will be haunting this country for decades.

    June 27, 2014 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  8. Lizzie

    During the Pres.Reagan years the DEMOCRATS promised to help close the borders IF the republican would only vote with them to give the millions of ILLEGALS amnesty. They did, and the borders are still wide open. Democrats promise and then CONVENIENTLY forget about what they said.

    June 27, 2014 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  9. Greg

    So in other words, all the Republicans want to do is file law suits against the President rather than get anything meaningful for the people accomplished. What an utter waste.

    June 27, 2014 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  10. Marie MD

    Of course it's a stunt. Anything and everything except earning his high paying job at taxpayer expense.
    This clown and his teaklan minions would have been fired from corporate America years ago. They might have them all in their pockets but they are useless employees.
    Did anyone see him and mitchie holding hands during the singing of we shall overcome? The ky mitchie looked as if was holding in a fart and the orange man was even more deeply orange than ever holding his breath I guess. All those scotch fumes while at work is a no no.

    June 27, 2014 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "Obama wouldn't have to circumvent them."

    He's not circumventing them if it's within his power/authority as POTUS.

    CNN really needs to get off the lazy train and report about Heckler v. Chaney and the other decisions in that line of cases.

    June 27, 2014 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  12. barryinlasvegas

    And as Hilary said – "Obama is a joke." Not a very good one.

    June 27, 2014 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  13. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - Take Back the House

    "You notice that he didn't specifically say what exactly he was objecting to."
    ----------------------------------------
    I most certainly did Mr. President. This is nothing but election year shenanigans. You as the executive should sue him for wasting taxpayer money on frivolous lawsuits. That's just my opinion.

    June 27, 2014 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  14. carlos

    Is this a hint of the new strategy? Will Cruz demand that the president resign in order to avoid another government shut down? Will this be the first of 50+ attempts.

    June 27, 2014 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  15. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - Take Back the House

    For a party that loves to say they stand up for the Constitution, and this POTUS is tearing it apart, then they obviously haven't read the Constitution or are just too plain dumb to understand it. As Sniffit stated above, it's not circumventing Congress when it's within the POTUS/CIC's.

    June 27, 2014 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  16. sonny chapman

    "Jobs,jobs, jobs"-John Boehner ,2010

    June 27, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  17. jinx9to88

    "You know, the suit is a stunt. But what I've told Speaker Boehner directly is, 'If you're really concerned about me taking too many executive actions, why don't you try getting something done through Congress?'"

    He cant he is scared of his own Congress and he might start crying.

    June 27, 2014 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  18. Paul

    Obama looked different, very defiant and hateful, in that interview.
    The Supreme Court, in the past two years, has Unanimously ruled AGAINST Obama, 13 times. Yes, Thirteen Times.

    I'm with Boehner. Obama, along with Holder and the liberal media-Are out-of control.

    June 27, 2014 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  19. tom l

    Have no idea what Boehner could be suing for but there is no doubt, as evidence by a 9-0 decision by the Supreme Court yesterday with regards to his phony recess appointments, that President Obama has overstepped his powers on many occasions. He also lost in his ability 9-0 to be able to check our cell phones without warrants. It is just shocking that liberals on here aren't more concerned with how much power our president is trying to get and use. But I still don't know what Boehner could be suing for and it seems like this is a gimmick.

    June 27, 2014 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  20. S.B. Stein

    There wouldn't be the "need to sue" the president if the GOP would work with him and do the necessary part of governing - compromise. If the "teapublicans" were around earlier, they might have gotten George W. Bush to spend more wisely. I don't know why they popped up shortly after Obama was elected. It is hard to tell if it is because Obama is Black or if the GOP didn't win, but it shows that some people out there can't be consistent in policy.

    June 27, 2014 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  21. jinx9to88

    "The majority of American people want to see immigration reform done. We had a bipartisan bill through the Senate, and you're going to squawk if I try to fix some parts of it administratively that are within my authority while you are not doing anything?'" the President added.

    Since when does the Congress care about what the majority of Americans want. 90% of the American people wanted background checks on gun sales and we seen what happened to that when put in front of this "do nothing" Congress!!

    June 27, 2014 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  22. freedom

    Keep scoffing, Obama – it just reveals your outrageous narcissism and disregard for America, and its laws and people.

    June 27, 2014 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  23. Oshman

    Don't do it. Call him out on it and legislate it but there is no need to rescue him with a lawsuit from his plethora of scandals or utter incompetence. If Obama wants to continue run things like a Banana Republic it just magnifies his glaring weakness.

    June 27, 2014 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    "Have no idea what Boehner could be suing for but there is no doubt, as evidence by a 9-0 decision by the Supreme Court yesterday with regards to his phony recess appointments, that President Obama has overstepped his powers on many occasions."

    He did nothing other POTUSes hadn't done before him. The only difference is that the GOP/Teatrolls didn't want him in particular to exercise that power in that manner, so they suddenly had a problem with something they've acquiesced in for generations...not decades...generations. Gee, let's see...what changed? What makes Obama soooooo "different" if his actions were in fact so much the same?

    "He also lost in his ability 9-0 to be able to check our cell phones without warrants."

    Yet another thing he did that a previous GOP POTUS did but which suddenly, magically became a problem for the GOP when it wasn't a GOP POTUS doing it.

    "It is just shocking that liberals on here aren't more concerned with how much power our president is trying to get and use"

    It is just shocking that the GOP/Teatrolls and ther conservative minions on here aren't more concerned with how much power our president is trying to get and use when he's really done nothing that GOP POTUSes, including the last one a few years ago, were doing AND THAT THEY SUPPORTED AT THE TIME.

    FIFY

    June 27, 2014 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  25. Hector Slagg

    Aw, So,
    If supporting the U.S. Constitution is a "Stunt", I will take the stunt. Either Obama it Totally Inept or he is doing anything he can to advance the Liberal Ajenda with Lies and "Stunts". After 100 years plus of Liberal Politics, Sans the 18 Trillion Dollar Federal debt. A Glaring Failure, by the way, I will take the Constitution. Talk of Impeachment is already rearing it's ugly head. You can fool some of the people all of the time, and you can fool all of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people, all of the time. Can you?

    June 27, 2014 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
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