US House Republicans to sue Obama over healthcare law

Republicans have complained about other unilateral actions that Obama has taken to advance his agenda, from executive orders on immigration policy to same-sex partner benefits.

US House Republicans to sue Obama over healthcare law

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday cleared the way for the launch of a lawsuit accusing President Barack Obama of overstepping his authority in carrying out his signature healthcare law.

The 225-201 vote, along party lines, to authorize the suit will allow House lawyers to draft legal documents over a five-week summer recess starting on Friday.

The planned lawsuit is expected to generate months of bitter campaign rhetoric from both Republicans and Democrats ahead of November elections that will determine the political control of Congress next year.

The suit is expected to claim that Obama, a Democrat, exceeded his executive authority in making unilateral changes to the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare.

Republicans argue that by delaying some healthcare coverage mandates and granting various waivers, he bypassed Congress in violation of the U.S. Constitution.

Republicans have complained about other unilateral actions that Obama has taken to advance his agenda, from executive orders on immigration policy to same-sex partner benefits.

But they have narrowly focused the suit on the healthcare law because "it is the option most likely to clear the legal hurdles necessary to succeed," said Republican Representative Pete Sessions of Texas, who chairs the House Rules Committee.

"This administration has effectively rewritten the law without following the constitutional process," Sessions added.

Democrats have slammed the lawsuit effort as a politically motivated waste of taxpayer resources while Congress has failed to act on other pressing issues including emergency funding to deal with a flood of migrant children.

"This is a veiled attempt at impeaching the president," said Democratic Representative Sheila Jackson-Lee of Texas.

OBAMA TELLS REPUBLICANS TO STOP HATIN'

President Barack Obama took his criticism of congressional Republicans to a higher pitch on Wednesday, imploring them to "stop just hatin' all the time" as they voted to sue him over charges he has overstepped the bounds of his office.

"This isn't about Republicans and Democrats, it's about defending the Constitution that we swore an oath to uphold," said House Speaker John Boehner.

But Obama, in a campaign-style speech, made fun of his political adversaries, laughing as he accused them of wasting time instead of addressing more pressing issues.

"Stop being mad all the time. Stop, stop, stop just hatin' all the time," he said of Republicans, drawing loud cheers from a raucous crowd of about 1,500 in an ornate theater in Kansas City.

"There's a bunch of stuff that needs to get done," he said. "Unfortunately, I think the main vote ... that they've scheduled for today is whether or not they decide to sue me for doing my job."

House Democrats said the suit would consume millions of dollars of taxpayer funds but would ultimately fail to undermine the president's discretion in implementing laws.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 31 Temmuz 2014, 11:21
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