House Speaker John Boehner's threatened lawsuit against President Barack Obama for executive overreach is "absolutely not" a stunt, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte says.
The Virginia Republican, appearing on "Fox News Sunday," said Republicans in Congress are not trying to stop Obama from doing his job, but are just trying to do what the Constitution prescribes, "not to take powers resting in the Congress and … taking power from the legislative branch.
"It's very important," Goodlatte said. "This should be bipartisan: People standing up for the balance of power.
But Democratic Rep. Xavier Becerra of California, was not in agreement, telling host Chris Wallace that all the executive orders issued by Obama in recent years, including those delaying Obamacare, were things that the public wanted. Congress, Becerra said, wasn't doing its job in getting legislation passed.
Wallace interrupted, "The Constitution does not say, 'Hey, if it's popular you can exceed your authority.'"
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, appearing on ""Meet the Press," said the lawsuit is not just for show when host David Gregory pointed out that it wouldn't make it through the courts before Obama leaves office even if a judge decides to hear it.
Priebus disagreed with critics who said Congress has no legal standing to take the case to court and that it has other means, such as defunding and impeachment, to fight the president.
Priebus said that the House speaker has standing because it is his job to pass laws. Obama, Priebus said, is saying by his executive orders he will enforce only the portions of the law he wants.
"He doesn't respect the Constitution," Priebus said.
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