TIME Congress

Obama: Boehner’s Lawsuit Is a ‘Stunt’

Barack Obama
In this Wednesday, June 25, 2014, file photo, President Barack Obama speaks at the League of Conservation Voters Capitol Dinner at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington. Jacquelyn Martin—AP

The President dismissed the Speaker’s planned legal action as a political ploy

President Barack Obama isn’t worried about a lawsuit House Speaker John Boehner plans to bring against him over his use of executive power, Obama said on Good Morning America Friday.

“I’m not going to apologize for trying to do something while they’re doing nothing,” Obama said. “The suit is a stunt.”

Boehner said Wednesday he plans to file a federal lawsuit against the President over what he calls “an effort to erode the power of the legislative branch” over the last five years. “I believe the President is not faithfully executing the laws of the country and on behalf of the institution and our constitution, standing up and fighting for this is in the best long-term interest of the Congress,” the House Speaker said.

Faced with a Republican-dominated Congress that has steadfastly thwarted much of his agenda, Obama has ramped up his use of executive actions to circumvent the House on matters like delaying implementation of parts of the Affordable Care Act, halting deportations of child immigrants and boosting the minimum wage and job protections for federal contractors.

“What I’ve told Speaker Boehner directly is: If you’re really concerned about me taking too many executive actions, why don’t you try getting something done through Congress?” the President said. “You’re going to squawk if I try to fix some parts of it administratively that are within my authority while you’re not doing anything?”

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