During a speech Tuesday in Las Vegas, President Obama said that the U.S. economy is in trouble, and that “we can’t wait for an increasingly dysfunctional Congress to do its job. Where they won’t act, I will.” The president pushed hard against what he sees as a do-nothing Congress, explaining what he planned to do about mortgages and student loans without the legislative branch’s say-so. On “The Laura Ingraham Show” Thursday, Speaker of the House John Boehner pushed back.
The Ohio Republican blasted Obama and accused him of usurping the authority that the U.S. Constitution grants to Congress.
“I thought we were a nation of laws and that our country was governed by our Constitution,” Boehner said.
“There’s more of an interest in our founding principles than at any time in my political career,” he added, “and when you talk about the founding principles, you realize that Article I gives the Congress of the United States the power of the purse, and that the president has powers under Article II.
“And this idea that you are just going to go around the Congress is just, it’s almost laughable. And so we are keeping a very close eye on the administration to make sure they are following the law and following the Constitution.”
Host Laura Ingraham went on to ask if Obama had flat-out violated the U.S. Constitution. Speaker Boehner has his own suspicions.
“I have great concerns that he may be,” Boehner said. “And I know that our committees of jurisdiction, the Educational Workforce Committee in the area of student loans — and when it comes to home ownership programs, probably the Financial Services Committee — those chairmen and those staffs are looking at these proposals to make sure that the president isn’t exceeding his authority.”
Boehner, however, does hold a trump card.
“We’ve got an appropriations process that’s under control here where we have the ability to limit their use of funds to try to bring this administration to heel,” he added.