Boehner eyes lawsuit against Obama on executive orders

Greg Nash

Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is considering bringing a lawsuit against President Obama for the executive orders the president has issued, Boehner's spokesman confirmed to The Hill on Wednesday.

Press secretary Michael Steel provided no other details regarding timing of a decision and didn’t pinpoint specific executive actions Boehner would challenge.

"The President has a clear record of ignoring the American people's elected representatives and exceeding his Constitutional authority, which has dangerous implications for both our system of government and our economy," Steel said in a statement. 

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Obama has issued a number of executive actions this year to circumvent a severely polarized Congress. The president, for instance, recently directed the Labor Department to extend family leave to same-sex couples and raised the minimum wage for federal contractors. The EPA recently announced a plan to reduce carbon emissions. A few years ago, Obama directed Homeland Security to create a program that would defer deportations for children who came to the United States illegally.

Earlier this year, Boehner warned Obama not to take any further executive action on immigration-related policies because he said then that immigration reform legislation would be “almost impossible" for Congress to tackle. 

Republicans have constantly blasted President Obama for his “pen and phone” strategy this year. The House has already passed two bills that would try and regulate Obama’s executive authority, but the Democratic-controlled Senate has not taken them up.

In January, a dozen House Republicans urged their GOP leaders to pursue a federal lawsuit challenging Obama's executive actions.

A White House aide in May, however, said that the Obama planned to pick up the pace on executive actions as the GOP focused on issues like the new House select committee on Benghazi.

When news of a possible lawsuit was first reported Tuesday, Boehner was at the White House with Obama meeting members of the 2013 U.S. and International Presidents Cup teams. 

This story was updated at 11:15 a.m.