July 1st, 2014
06:08 PM ET
9 years 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.

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"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. Cheri Vislay

    The president and the Congress are acting like spoiled children. They need to put partisan politics and hurt feelings aside and work together. That is the only way anything will get done. This back and forth bickering is serving NO purpose!

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

    Well said, Mr. President:

    "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."

    July 2, 2014 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  3. Amy

    It is so nice to see politicians not acting like children. (yes, this is sarcasm). It seems politicians have the public where they want them. They seem to know most people just get mad and want someone to blame. Yep, I'm talking about all political parties.

    July 2, 2014 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  4. kim

    the GOP still trying to find a way to get the black man out of the white house

    July 2, 2014 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  5. Saddlin' Up

    Won't get much. All Democrats say they're broke.

    July 2, 2014 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  6. cobra

    obama is a socialist/communist, also a champion liar! Anyone that supports him can be painted with the same brush. He will lie about anything, no one has ever heard and truth come out of him.

    July 2, 2014 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  7. InstantBackGroundSniper

    The best way to describe Obama is from a little quote from Shakespeare's play, Macbeth.
    "Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more. It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing!"

    July 2, 2014 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  8. bobo

    We... the People, will Sue You. We will impeach you! You Mr. Obama are worse than Nixon. Your arrogance and my way or the highway attitude. You disgust me!

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

    Odalice: If by best you mean worst, you're spot on.

    July 2, 2014 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  10. Liberal...NOT

    Obama is such a joke as president. He has alienated congress to the extent that they don't want to work with him at all. He is such a poor excuse as a leader. Did Obama truly think that being a leader means that what you want gets done? Leaders must lead through charisma. Leaders get people to follow them through compromise, logic and convincing. The masses follow leaders due to respect. Obama has none of these traits and is the most divisive president this country has ever had. Really, really sad that the leader of our country acts this way. Embarrassing.

    July 2, 2014 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  11. Friends

    So go ahead and "Impeach Me" would be more appropriate.

    July 2, 2014 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  12. forGodslove

    way to go Mr. President, some people are just hateful, cold hearted tyrants who do nothing but spread nonsense. but we like to hear them talk, the more they open their pie holes, the more we recognize the fools. we got you, a compassionate man, is a good man and a great leader. let them sue, who cares.

    July 2, 2014 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  13. Bristoll

    Obama to Congress: "So sue me."

    America to Obama: "Wish granted!"

    July 2, 2014 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  14. musician

    The GOP is merely representing their constituency, big oil, big banks, big pharma, the war machine, multi-national corporations and the 1%. How else can they fill their campaign coffers?

    July 2, 2014 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  15. Dave M

    Ha! Nice try Mr. President. Most of us know that you are grossly twisting words and truth, as always. Many of the so-called "middle class" (of which I am one), do not agree with you and we believe you are turning this country upside down it what seems like a left-wing conspiracy to destroy the America I grew up with (I'm 60).

    The GOP is not "do nothing" nor are the the "no party" – all labels that you and your leftist brethren are trying desperately to brand them with – no, they are trying to save America and the American constitution and way of life. Every attempt the GOP makes to work with you is thwarted by you. Everything you bring forward you refuse to discuss or compromise.

    I guess there are some that will believe your rhetoric, but I'm not one of them.

    July 2, 2014 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  16. tom l

    What a tremendous way to work with someone. I know that I always want to work with someone and compromise right after they insult me and mischaracterize my opinions.

    July 2, 2014 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  17. truegrit54

    Glad to see him calling out the republiturtles on their lack of action on anything other than trying to undo the Presidency. Congress for the past six years has had nothing but themselves in mind. They have completely forgotten about the American public. They have even got the public so GOP kool-aid drunk as to think they are still trying. Don't like the ACA? Try asking Mitch McConnell how much he sold out for! Try kicking your representatives in the butt if you don't like what is happening in DC. They certainly aren't doing anything to make it better.

    July 2, 2014 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  18. Joe R.

    First of all, as a member of the middle-class, I'm not fooled by your arrogance.

    Second, just because you're not getting what you want, how quickly you want, it doesn't mean you get to trample on the Constitution.

    July 2, 2014 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  19. jean par

    It's about time. Frankly I think both sides suck but I do have to say Obama was left with no choice. Republicans especially good ole boy John B. has been against obama from day one and even admitted he would make this presidency as hard for him as he could. Grow up and put your big boy boxers on bexause this government is truly a sad and embarrasing piece of work.

    July 2, 2014 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  20. bobo

    Impeach Obama! We want a President.... not a Dictator!

    July 2, 2014 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  21. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    don in albuquerque says:
    July 1, 2014 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm
    If the President had come out swinging like this at the start, his presidency may have been much more positive. All the GOTP understands is when someone finally slaps them in the mouth. Go ahead and sue. Go ahead and run your Benghazi hit parade, but while your at it maybe you could accomplish something like, oh, I don’t know……..Hey! Job, jobs, jobs, maybe that could go somewhere.

    Had he done this in the beginning he would not have gotten a second term Don. You ever heard the phrase "angry black man"? He would have scared half the whites in this country to death and they would not have supported him. This is why President Obama was so docile during his first term. It's ok for others to be forceful but when we are we get tagged with the term "angry". Had he acted half as bad as Christy he would be impeached right now.

    July 2, 2014 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  22. Gunderson

    OK, good buddy,
    Where you be next week. Hard to tell what group you selling Snake Oil to next. Maybe you be on southern border granting amnesty to a bunch of illegals, no? Maybe we no sue, just boot you into conservative stronghold! Don't you love liberals and 18 Trillion Dollar Federal Debt.

    July 2, 2014 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  23. cnnife

    Responding to ABQsage:

    Why can't a president get beyond partison politics and name calling to work with all elected leaders to accomplish important goals for the benefit of all?

    How do you get beyond partition politics with a house GOP whose united vow is not to pass anything as long as he (Obama) remained the POTUS.

    July 2, 2014 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  24. Rob

    Who could possibly support this child in the WH? What a spoiled, whiney brat. His overreach threatens us all. The executive must be curbed, no president should be able to act in this fashion. What he refers to as fringe elements opposing him time and again show to be the majority of voters when polled. He just flat out lies every single day. What a shame.

    July 2, 2014 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  25. A proud Conservative

    CNN--Another Liberal Rag that's in bed with this President and the likes of Ried and Pelosi. This guy does nothing but play the blame game and has no Leadership qualities. How he ever got reelected is beyond me. Obama is nothing but an ineffective community organizer and not a very good one at that. Black or White-=this President is WORTHLESS.

    July 2, 2014 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
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