According to an article that appeared in the Hill on Sunday, Republicans are proud of their efforts to block what they view to be an overreach of Pres. Obama's executive powers, mainly by trying to block new efforts at legislation proposed by the administration.
Because the current Congress has passed fewer laws than any in modern history, Obama has had to resort to “his administration’s regulatory authority in pursuit of key policy goals,” write Ben Goad and Julian Hattem for the Hill.
While the tone of Goad and Hattem's article might come off as approving of the president's actions and condemning the Republicans, some would say that Congress blocking the president is a good thing, as many maintain that Obama has overextended his powers as president.
“We’re left with no choice,” said Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R.-Utah. “The president can’t just go it alone, that’s not who we are as a country.”
In particular, some have accused Obama of ignoring certain parts of the Affordable Care Act, only enforcing those parts of the law when he sees fit, which would be illegal.
“A president, under a Constitutional system, doesn’t have the ability to pick and choose which laws to follow, and that’s the same pattern you see in dictatorial societies where the leader says, ‘Ignore the law. Go with the power of the president instead of the written law.’ That’s not the way our Constitution’s supposed to work,” Cruz said.
The president has also decided to ignore immigration laws, such as choosing to not deport illegals under the age of 30 who came to the United States as children.
All of this led to hearings in the House of Representatives last week. During one of these hearings, Rep. Trey Gowdy, R.-S.C., expressed concern that Obama may ignore election laws, citing his refusal to enforce immigration laws.
“If the president can fail to enforce immigration laws, can the president likewise fail to enforce election laws?” Gowdy asked Simon Lazarus, senior counsel to the Constitutional Accountability Center.
“If you can dispense with immigration laws or marijuana laws or mandatory minimums,” Gowdy continued, “can you also dispense with election laws?”
Though Lazarus denied this to be the case, Gowdy continued to express concern.
During another interaction in the hearings, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R.-Va., asked Jonathan Turley, a professor at George Washington University Law School, about the impact Obama is having on the separation of power among the three branches of government.
In response, Turley accused Obama of “becoming the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid. That is the concentration of power in every single branch.”