The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday voted 233-181 for a bill, the Enforce the Law Act, that will permit the Congress to file civil complaints in federal court against any of President Barack Obama's departments or agencies that refuse or neglect to enforce the laws passed by any Congress and signed by any president, according to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va.
The bill had been pushed by House Republicans who claimed the Obama administration cherry-picks what laws to enforce and what laws to ignore or even alter as in the case of the president's signature law, the Affordable Care Act of 2010 a/k/a Obamacare, and laws pertaining to immigration enforcement, according to an Examiner news story.
Besides the unanimous Republican votes, a number of Democrats also voted for the law to pass, including two congressmen from Texas, Reps. Henry Cuellar and Pete Gallego.
The bill is a result of the anger of lawmakers over President Obama's use of executive discretion and actions, which many legal scholars have said is unconstitutional.
Republicans have been loudly critical of President Obama's decisions regarding deportation of illegal aliens, arbitrarily charging welfare regulations and having the Attorney General "harass" states' governments over voter identification laws or curtail enforcement of marijuana laws in states that have legalized or decriminalized its use.
Although Democrats continue to minimize the passage of yet another bill that will be shelved in the Senate since it remains in Democratic Party hands, Republicans are informing voters that if and when they take control of the Senate, they will be able to move forward in their desire to curb what's been called "the imperial presidency" of Barack Obama.
During his testimony before the Judiciary Committee, legal scholar Jonathan Turley -- who admitted voting for Obama -- said:
“The problem with what the President is doing is that he’s not simply posing a danger to the constitutional system. He’s becoming the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid. That is the concentration of power in a single branch.”
"Throughout the Obama presidency, we have seen a pattern — President Obama circumvents Congress when he doesn't get his way.But the Constitution does not confer upon the president the executive authority to disregard the separation of powers and rewrite acts of Congress based on his policy preferences," said Rep. Goodlatte.
In the past, Goodlatte said:
“Our Constitution is clear: Congress writes our laws and the President enforces them. But for the past five years, President Obama repeatedly has waived, amended, or ignored our laws by issuing executive decrees from the Oval Office rather than working with Americans’ representatives in Congress. For example, we’ve witnessed President Obama systematically dismantle our immigration laws and rewrite his signature healthcare law even though he doesn’t have the authority to do so. This pattern of executive overreach undermines the rule of law and threatens the individual liberty that our system of separated powers is designed to protect."