July 1st, 2014
06:08 PM ET
5 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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Obama brushes off clamor over Clinton’s ‘broke’ comments

soundoff (1,488 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    Take a page from the Republicans and Cram it down the GOP's throats Obama. If you believe in the hype from Fox and other Right Wing nut job media outlets then you are the fool. The GOP have been nothing but sore loosers during his entire tenure and just hate that a man with his ideologies is in the White House. Look it up....Bush did 291 EO's, Reagan did 381. Obama is at 180. Boehner just wants attention....oh wait he's crying again.

    July 2, 2014 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  2. crabman1

    L O L gop stampn their fee like little kids --- do what ya gotta do MR PREZ

    July 2, 2014 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  3. danicalifornia

    He's so unpresidential and divisive. He makes no attempts to have a dialogue. He loves to hear himself talk and it's to the point that no one wants to listen to the ever campaigning wind of bag he is. Ask Harry Reid to bring bills to the Senate. Harry is the Obama puppet who is controlled by Valerie Jarrett.

    July 2, 2014 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  4. Name

    What good is a president that can't get anything done? It' not the Republicans! Plenty of presidents found ways to work things out but Obama is just a terrible politician.

    July 2, 2014 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  5. everstryker

    Simply incredible how this President masks his inability to lead by trying to pawn it off on a divided congress. I guess he is not as good of a community organizer and negotiator as everyone had hoped.

    July 2, 2014 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  6. troy anglin

    Mr. Obama is really slipping when he can't blame President Bush. At some point, we have to get our financial affairs in order, and establish a coherent foreign policy and stop acting like I'm right and the Republicans are picking on me.

    July 2, 2014 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  7. Dean

    Don't sue him. Impeach him for not fulfilling his sworn oath.

    July 2, 2014 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  8. Dean

    jenn, philadelphia

    The President might need a reminder of what "Congress" is. It is both the House and the Senate. So, in a way, he's correct when he talks about a do-nothing Congress. The Senate hasn't done anything either. Interesting part is how the press and the President seem to forget who runs the Senate

    Yes Harry Reid is sitting on over 40 jobs bills from the House that he refuses to bring up for a vote.

    July 2, 2014 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  9. acsdf

    Despite being a Republican, I am getting very discontent with the House at this point. It feels like they are content to just waste everyone's time. They are behaving very poorly, and even if I don't agree with Mr. Obama's politics, at least he is trying to create change, and upend the status-quo the House is so set on maintaining.

    July 2, 2014 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  10. America

    People,

    Just for one minute forget your political affiliation, and social and economical views to examine what is occurring to this country as a citizen of a free-nation.

    Our system of check-and-balances seems to be coming undone. Are you not concerned, as a citizen? One branch of government is becoming larger than the rest, are you not slightly worried? If you are not worried now, then when? At what point will you, as a citizen, become concerned about the actions of this administration?

    July 2, 2014 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  11. CC

    Obama has tried to bring the two sides together for a long time now. There is only so much you can do with a brick wall.

    July 2, 2014 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  12. FLIndy

    All one has to do is look at the poll #'s...no matter how low President Obama's favorability rating is, it will NEVER be as low as this Congress with a whopping 10%!! That alone should show Boehner and the filibustering Repub Senators that what they are doing isn't what the people want but their hatred for this president and their do anything to regain power stance has them blinded. Very sad time for our country.

    July 2, 2014 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  13. Combatvet

    We all would like to lay our opinions at the foot of the idols altar and declare one party is the biggest donor of ideals for our country. Neither party has acted for the people but rather have acted out of self interests. Many of our politicians have been pandering to their favorite lobbyists for ions. So we divide and take sides but the real problem is Washington has been in the business of divide and conquer for many years. Obama has led the way in the divide government contest since his campaigning for president. Countless lies from both sides of the isle have even divided Americans further and all at the same time illegals are allowed to cross our boarder without restraint. So we as average Americans have been divided by the demons of political camps and we are the pons in the game. Congress and the Senate have been doing nothing to preserve the model that our founders had in mind. One is too far left while the other is too far right. Why can't we meet in the middle and agree at times to disagree and yet build a better America without departing the founders of our nations ideals? Are we become so corrupt that we can no longer better ourselves as a nation without bickering for the person with the most money. The real problem is the middle class continues to the target of everything negative in Washington DC. Washington needs to get back to the business of building a better America and shed the dead old line career politicians. Term limits will help restore a better political process for the future of our nation. People will be heard instead of career politicians pandering to lobbyists and special interest groups.

    July 2, 2014 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  14. The Griot

    DinkyPink wrote:

    "Good for you Mr. President. We voted him in so that he would work on these things, congress says no, and the people suddenly do not like him anymore. I do not really understand why the lack of respect for this president. He surely isn't the worst we had, and had the potential to be the best if we would have let him do his job. Roads are good. Wish the old white dudes would just come out and admit the "real" reason they are so gung ho about making Pres. Obama appear to be the worst president ever. It has nothing to do with his policy. It has everything to do with color and party. Just admit it Republicans. You wouldn't stand to see a person with even a drop of African American blood be successful and a great leader."
    -----------------

    You've hit the nail on the head. Couldn't have said it better myself.

    July 2, 2014 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  15. Chalupa

    I thought Obama was supposed to bring about change and unite Americans. Guess he changed his mind.

    July 2, 2014 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  16. Fosung

    The things Obama could do without congress, he has done them and had results. Not so much the things he needs republicans to sign of on.

    July 2, 2014 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  17. Jodo

    obama is incredibly dishonest when he places all of the blame on the GOP lead House of Representatives.

    Since the Republicans took the majority of seats in the House, the House has passed 240 bills – 40 of which were specifically aimed at job creation. But not one of these 240 bills was allowed to come up for a vote in the Senate. Little Harry decided to block every one of them

    obama is the most dishonest president in my very long lifetime.

    July 2, 2014 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  18. Malory Archer

    jenn, philadelphia
    The President might need a reminder of what "Congress" is. It is both the House and the Senate. So, in a way, he's correct when he talks about a do-nothing Congress. The Senate hasn't done anything either. Interesting part is how the press and the President seem to forget who runs the Senate.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Yeah, except there's this little thingy in the Senate called a filibuster. Evidently you've never heard of it so allow me to explain: The Senate requires sixty votes to pass a bill. The Democrats, while they hold the majority of seats in the Senate, DON'T hold sixty seats. The reds made it their sole mission to ensure President Obama is unsuccessful in passing ANY legislation, and they filibuster EVERY SINGLE bill that makes it to chambers – INCLUDING THEIR OWN LEGISLATION! They're an embarrassment and should be forced to return EVERY SINGLE PENNY they've siphoned from from we the people since January 20, 2009, both in pay and those ridiculous investigations into all those so-called "scandals" they created in in their heads, yet have managed to find any damning evidence (Dem groups were also targeted by the IRS and were the ONLY groups that were actually harmed by those investigations).

    July 2, 2014 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  19. mike

    "so sue me"........we will mr. worst president since WWII................................

    July 2, 2014 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  20. Zeke

    Obama's recent record with the Constitution is 0-4 two of the four were unanimous and Obama is furious. He is on his way to a deeper darker place than he may want to go. Since the Supreme Court ruled that Obamacare was a tax, that means his modifications to the tax code are illegal without congress. It does not bode well for Obama.

    July 2, 2014 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  21. Malory Archer

    .. yet HAVEN'T managed to find any damning evidence (Dem groups were also targeted by the IRS and were the ONLY groups that were actually harmed by those investigations)

    July 2, 2014 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  22. Anonymous

    please Mr President stop trying to help me! i am middle class and everything you touch makes my bills increase!!!Some of you say that republicans are for the rich only?? Under this president the rich have increased their wealth tremendously, also dont forget this middle class champ is rich himself. I could care less what color someone is, when you are president you work for the good of all your country, not just democrat or republican.

    July 2, 2014 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  23. Jodo

    Peter Gerdeman needs to put away the partisan hatred that he leanrned from obama and become aware of a few facts. The Democrat Senate has blocked 240 bills that were approved by the House. It is little Harry that is the enemy of the middle class

    July 2, 2014 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  24. Kevin

    Just imagine how better off we might all be if congress actually tried to do something other than block the president at every turn. Can you see it? Good luck this year and in 2016 GOP. You're going to need it.

    July 2, 2014 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  25. CryBabies

    Incompetence evolves to arrogance. Do your job BO. Work with congress to find solutions based on compromise, not "my way or the highway." This President has never mastered the art of working with his adversarys. The Senate, headed by Harry Reid has not even taken a vote on approx. 40 HoR bills sent to him. Plenty of blame to go around to all but as for this guy, .........Incompetence evolves to arrogance..

    July 2, 2014 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
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