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.

Related: Obama’s ‘day in life’ offers opening to tout message and slam Republicans

Obama jokes about 'crack' pies

Obama brushes off clamor over Clinton’s ‘broke’ comments

soundoff (1,488 Responses)
  1. Ancient Texan

    Schoolyard bully shouting infantile schoolyard taunts. He ignores the fact his EO overreach has been pointed out by the SCOTUS by 9-0 in one case and 5-4 in others and continues to ignore the will of the people that sent the Congress to do their wishes and plans to do his agenda alone. Even Professor Turley (staunch liberal) says Obama is overreaching and endangering the system of government our founders established.

    July 2, 2014 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  2. Tim

    Obama – Classless and clueless to the last. America deserves better. We need to elect responsible and competent adults to office beginning this year. No more Democrats.

    July 2, 2014 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  3. Jan

    I do not understand how most Republicans can accept taxpayer dollars to go to Washington and sit on their hands – refuse to compromise, and expect that voters are not going to retaliate. Obama has had the least amount of executive actions of any president, yet the Repubs are screaming foul. They aren't fooling anyone save themselves.

    July 2, 2014 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  4. heyjoe1

    This President is so flippant. Maybe he should eat some more of the crack pie crust they serve in the WH that he is living like a caged bear. I honestly think he is the WORST President ever.

    July 2, 2014 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  5. barryinlasvegas

    If a white president would have said this CNN and the rest of the MSM would be demanding that congress impeach him.

    July 2, 2014 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  6. Joe S

    If they did then he could deposition the republicans and get them to say on record under oath why they shut down the government, blocked the voting on everything that could have helped boost the economy as well as blocking Obama from filling important positions.

    July 2, 2014 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  7. Ancient Texan

    JohnRJohnson- The Republican Congress has been busy, passing 240 + bills but the "obstructive" branch is Harry Reid's Senate.....refusing to even debate any of the bills and 'tabling' them. The president is an unethical bully...period.

    July 2, 2014 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  8. peterz

    Politicians and law were contrast items like black and white. It was a stunt when GOP blending themselves into the law. Was it a nothing-to-lose stunt but brain-dead stunt?

    July 2, 2014 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  9. 7light

    Mr. President – Please sue the House Republicans for wasting tax payers dollars with “do nothing” agenda.

    July 2, 2014 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  10. Raoul Duke, Doctor of Journalism

    "soulcatcher" Glen Cook fan?

    July 2, 2014 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  11. NameAndrew

    Is Obaama kidding? Hes not for Middle Class. All his actions in office are designed to help the Welfare Collecting Class and Govern Employees with mega-millions pensions gouge the Mid Class.

    July 2, 2014 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  12. GOP FAIL

    Mr. President, if you're the worst president ever, please explain why my 401K QUADRUPLED since you came into office. Please explain why I lost 40% under BUSH/CHENEY REGIME if Bush was so wonderful. Answer: GOP FAIL.

    July 2, 2014 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  13. FLIndy

    So, for those haters who all along have claimed our President is incompetent and has done nothing please explain why you would be upset if he took action on his own accord to move the country forward and try to improve that which needs to be fixed. The problem with the haters is that they can't decide if they hate him for doing nothing or for doing too much – which is it???

    July 2, 2014 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  14. z2cents

    "As long as they’re doing nothing, I’m not going to apologize for trying to do something."..pretty much sums it up. The party of nothing stying to do nothing again.

    July 2, 2014 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  15. foxghostwriter

    Are we being real here? Record number of filibusters...more filibusters since 2009 than were used in the rest of the time the US has been in existence. Filibusters of usually routine appointments. Blocking said appointments on grounds that had nothing to do with the position or the appointee. Filibustering their own bills (McConnell). Then, anything that does happen to make it out of the Senate dies in the House (even though anything that comes out of the Senate by rule is bi-partisan). Yeah.....I haven't forgotten the bills the House passed. Jobs bills.....that either dealt with rolling back regulations, stifling the EPA or Keystone.....If they were legit, they had attachments to end Obamacare.

    Keep in mind that these folks also were responsible for the recession in the first place. Responsible for the credit downgrade and the government shutdown. And let's not forget death panels, Fake and Frivilous, Solyndra, Benghazi, bin Laden, the IRS, the NSA, the VA and the birth certificate.

    Seriously.....these are the folks Obama has to work with. Cruz, Bachmann, McConnell, Boehner, Lee, Hatch, Kyl, McCain and a bunch of other folks who are either nutjobs, dumbies or shrewd political operatives.

    And folks question why he can't compromise or get things done?

    July 2, 2014 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  16. Chuck

    He should have done this from the very beginning when the republicans announced they were not going to work with the president from the time he was elected. That should have told the American people that the party of NO is a party of obstructionists. I am so glad they will not see the White House for a long, long, time. Those American not in polls or don't affiliate with any party are listening. They are not happy. They will not vote republican.

    July 2, 2014 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  17. peterz

    Politicians and law were contrast items like black and white. It was a stunt when GOP blending themselves into the law. Was it a nothing-to-lose stunt or a brain-dead stunt?

    July 2, 2014 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  18. mymary0913

    And The Great Divider continues thumbing his nose at the constitution, working around the checks and balances put in place to prevent just this. Maybe he and Michelle can adopt them all personally? It is pure child abuse to advertise in January on the Federal Website for a contract for 62,000 unaccompanied children to be house WITHOUT PARENTS to bring them here on to get their parents here later on vote-grabbing promises using our tax money. Cruel, cold, poorly supervised, wicked. Every previous generation of LEGAL immigrants had sponsors and didn't come looking for immediate government dependency like he is promising, starting with three meals, a bed, and government health. I can't believe that anyone who loved people and especially children believe this is anything other than politics ahead of humanity. Shipping them off on government hired busses to God knows where to do God knows what with God knows who is unthinkable. Talk about setting people up for failure and children up for worse than what they had in their own cultures.

    July 2, 2014 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  19. Lucas

    "So sue me."... was that another executive order?

    July 2, 2014 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  20. Lisa

    Instead of flapping their gums about suing the president why don't they do what they were elected to do. Bunch of cry babies!!!

    July 2, 2014 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  21. Beverly

    I wish President Obama would become an "Angry Man", but it is not in his nature. We all know that the congressman from Kentucky said very loud, that the number one job he had was to make President Obama a one term president. The American people have the power of their vote to make sure we end some terms of congressmen, remember
    Eric Cantor. We need to vote and and end some terms, so that we elect people who have the interest of the American People first, and their political power second. Vote, Vote, Vote, that is where your power is needed in every election.

    July 2, 2014 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  22. dhawk

    Obama to Republicans: 'So sue me' I'm always amazed at the maturity the President presents to the world! So like a 7th grader!

    July 2, 2014 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  23. Anonymous

    The retaliation has not stopped since the beginning of the republicans 2 major losses. From the top, down to fanatics whose pride was hurt to be associated with a losing team. This retaliation supersedes Americans, and the country these quasi leaders swore to work for, instead it's their mighty party that is their deity.

    July 2, 2014 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  24. 7light

    Republicans in Congress have done absolute zero to show any merit

    July 2, 2014 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  25. Dallas

    Mr. President: Don't you have some kind of Executive authority where you could remove Boehner from office. That would be a great gift to the American people. And while you're at it, send Ted Cruz, Mitch McConnell, and that whole bunch packing. You are my 11th President and I've never in my life seen such disrespect shown to a President. Just know, there are millions of us standing with you!

    July 2, 2014 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60