July 1st, 2014
06:08 PM ET
6 months ago

Obama to Republicans: 'So sue me'

(CNN) – President Barack Obama dared Republicans to follow through on their threats to bring a lawsuit against his administration over his use of executive action.

"Middle-class families can’t wait for Republicans in Congress to do stuff. So sue me," Obama said Tuesday at an event in Washington.

"As long as they’re doing nothing, I’m not going to apologize for trying to do something."

Obama’s defiant attitude comes as House Speaker John Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, plans to propose legislation that could bring a lawsuit against him for implementing executive actions that the GOP contends amounts to a breach of his constitutional power by side-stepping the legislative process.

Obama: Boehner's lawsuit is 'a stunt'

Recently, Obama has ramped up his use of executive authority 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.

On Monday, Obama said he would start "a new effort to fix as much of our immigration system as I can on my own, without Congress."

Poll: Can Obama get the job done?

At Tuesday's event, Obama continued to harp on congressional Republicans to pass legislation - this time pushing them to invest in transportation.

Standing in front of Key Bridge, which connects the city's Georgetown-area to Virginia, Obama continued his stepped-up rhetoric hammering Republican for obstructing action in Washington.

A fundraising first for Obama

Obama proposed a long-term highway construction bill earlier this year that he says would spur job growth.

"It’s not crazy, it’s not socialism," Obama said of his transportation proposal. "It’s not the imperial presidency - no laws are broken. We’re just building roads and bridges like we’ve been doing for the last, I don’t know, 50, 100 years. But so far, House Republicans have refused to act on this idea."

CNN's Mike Ahlers and Rene Marsh contributed to this report.

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soundoff (1,488 Responses)
  1. Dave

    Way to throw gasoline on the fire, pres. What's next, saying he's trying to decide between Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachman for his next Supreme Court nominee?

    July 2, 2014 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  2. Brainy Smurf

    I'm not even a Republican. However, you people who keep saying "He should bypass Congress" are comical at best. There's this thing called the Constitution which LIMITS the power or each branch of Government. As much as I dislike what the Republicans are doing, having the President bypass Congress whenever he feels like he isn't getting his way is thousands of times worst. How is it going to work for you the next time we get a Republican as President? You all are going to scream bloody murder if/when he does the exact same things the current one is doing.

    July 2, 2014 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  3. floridares

    Tools in right calling Obama a terrorist. The only ones guilty of killing are right wing nut jobs like McVeigh of Oklahoma City fame, anti life killers who bomb abortion clinics and kill pregnant woman and the doctor killers.
    Obama keep using executive orders because these morons on right will never get anything passed except for another repeal in House of you guessed it...Obamacare.

    July 2, 2014 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  4. Farrok

    So what? There are thousands and thousands of illegal aliens who are running our border that are going to sue him too.
    They demand food, housing, cloths, medical care and regular payments all the while American Citizens go hungry and with out shelter and help.

    July 2, 2014 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  5. 7light

    Republicans opposing betterment of American and it’s people – they are truly not of an American spirit we all believe and dream it.

    July 2, 2014 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  6. Books Will Save The Planet

    The President claims he will continue to take action that helps the middle class.
    How was the Obama Administration's creation of the current border crisis through disinformation generated by the diplomatic core helping the middle class? How is spending $750M to date and seeking another $2 Billion to house, feed, offer health care and then process into the USA or back over the border helping the USA.
    How is relocating an EPA department manager to New Zealand for the past 24 months to avoid testimony to congress helping the middle class? How is telling the US public he feels like a caged bear, and ask the GOP to sue him while he sends military hardware and forces as , (boots on the ground) helping the US Middle Class?
    President Obama is disingenuous at best and in violation of federal laws in the aiding of illegal immigration to the US by providing financial resources to the illegals. How is crying that the illegals are here to the benefit and are important to the future of the USA while at the same time we have a minority run human trafficking crisis here in Florida? I want my vote back, I apologize to the country for falling for the lies of a slippery tongue lawyer turned politician named Barrack Obama.

    July 2, 2014 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  7. Leadership lacking

    Middle class Americans need LESS executive actions and more leadership from President Obama.
    So far, Obama's executive actions have worked against the middle class.

    Gridlock in Congress reflects the deep divisions amongst Americans. It's nothing new except maybe a current President who is unable to lead and find common ground.between opposing political views.

    July 2, 2014 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  8. Louise

    I was beginning to think this president had no spine. He tried to do it with their help and if you check records the number of times a repub pres used ex order far outweighs his. You go Barack!!

    July 2, 2014 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  9. 7light

    Republicans are without a leader, they are ignorant of challenges facing middle-class families, they are without a compass to guide them out of their darkness of self-immortalization. They have NO moral dignity to serve this nation of ours and are a total embarrassment

    July 2, 2014 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  10. JoeFriday

    If Boehner actually follows through with his threat, which I doubt he will, he has a very good case. Just the Obama Administration actively altering dates and deadlines for the Affordable Care Act from that which was passed legislatively is enough to make a good case. The problem in filing such a suit is, what does a plaintiff request for relief? A court to tell POTUS to do his job?

    July 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  11. Daniel

    Obama to Americans " I will ignore your elected officials whom represent you in government and do as I please"

    This guy is awesome he will single handily destroy the democrats.....

    I'm not a republican but a libertarin and I hate nothing more than a democrat

    July 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  12. Trybe

    It amazes me how so many people have a problem with the initiatives the president is trying to take. All of them are aimed at helping students, the working class, families and yet folks don't seem to like anything he proposes. I knew racism existed but I never knew it was this bad until this black man became president.

    July 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  13. billbl

    Finally, the president is facing the fact that these Republicans are just playing dirty politics rather than trying to solve problems in the interests of the nation and the citizens.

    July 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  14. 7light

    Bravo Mr. President – stand your ground because “true” Americans are with you.

    July 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  15. dcw

    You people are freaking idiots who think obama is a good president. How blindly stupid you all are.

    July 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  16. Patrish

    Love it. Boerner is acting like a spoiled brat. Most of his problems are connected to the tea party members. He can't control his house so he blames someone else. I may not always agree with our President, but he is right on the money. If the congress would pass some bills, then he wouldn't have to do all the work. Remember every bill that came up to helps vets was voted down by the house. Thanks for nothing.

    July 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  17. Aesop

    Watch out for the counter-suit for the do nothing house leader J. B. which causes last resort effort by the president.
    Divided we fall but united we stand. Even Aesop knew that.

    July 2, 2014 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  18. Go get 'em

    Thie last Congress was the worst in history but they are now trying to best their own record for doing NOTHING-IF they REFUSE to govern and only say NO-someone has to lead the country-GO OBAMA

    July 2, 2014 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  19. Garrett F.

    The republicans are only representing their constituents by obstructing this president. The majority of the people want nothing to do with Obama's useless agenda. Keep up the good work, republicans! Only 2 years to go before we are all rid of this guy.

    July 2, 2014 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  20. Jerry

    Does it bother anyone at all that no opposing view is presented in this articxle? This "news article" is written as a commercial for Obama and lacks any semblence of journalistic independence. Why no comment from republican side?

    Very weak reporting CNN, shame that you take the value and responsibility of Freedom of the Press so lightly. There is an opinion section on the same web page where this article would have been more appropriately placed...

    July 2, 2014 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  21. Ronnie was a RINO!

    Obama is lying. The House has been working extremely hard. It takes a lot of work to come up with all those anti-abortion bills and attempts to repeal the ACA.

    July 2, 2014 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  22. Anonymous

    I thought we were not a communist state... Did I miss something, since when did our government become a single-party rule.

    July 2, 2014 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  23. Daniel

    Obama loses in the Supreme Court twice in a week once a unheard of 9-0 decision.

    And now he's acting like a baby that didn't get his way. Obama has DADDY ISSUES

    July 2, 2014 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  24. connieb

    So can the American people sue congress for not doing the job they are being paid to do? Perhaps if we all filed papers?

    July 2, 2014 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  25. *((&*UIOY

    this is awesome! I vote green but good to know obama has cojones...FINALLY!!! GOP obstructionist can go take a hike!!!!!

    this is the best news I have heard in a while!!!! right wing obstructionists are 100% responsible for US crumbling roads bridges infrastructure failing education falling behind ALL for their antihuman misogynist ideologues. HOWEVER, next step is kick out all obstructiionsts, make voting records 100% transparent and somehow restrain out of control supremese as well!!!! no more 'family values' cos. outsourcing to commun!st china etc.

    July 2, 2014 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
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