The Corner

Obama’s Ex-Lawyer: Boehner Can Defund Obama, Not Sue Him

The attorney who advised President Obama to circumvent Congress with an array of executive orders disputed House speaker John Boehner’s right to challenge those maneuvers in court, but she did acknowledge that the House has the authority to defund those initiatives.

Kathryn Ruemmler’s comments came just months after she worked with Obama during a government shutdown over whether Congress would defund Obamacare. “Congress has a lot of tools available to it to challenge the president if they disagree to the things that he’s doing,” Ruemmler, who stepped down as White House counsel in May, said on Meet the Press. “Most importantly, the power of the purse. But, you know, a lawsuit, to say it’s frivolous I think is an understatement.”

“The power of the purse” — that was the conservative argument for why it was appropriate for the House to pass a spending bill that funded all of government except for the Affordable Care Act.

“The Constitution gives Congress the power of the purse, the most important check we have on an overreaching executive,” said Senator Ted Cruz (R., Texas), one of the advocates for attempting to defund Obamacare, in August. “Now is the best chance we have to exercise this power in order to defund Obamacare.”

Ruemmler was an important part of “helping develop options to carry out Mr. Obama’s decision to take unilateral executive actions to bypass congressional inaction,” according to the New York Times’ Charlie Savage.

“She advised Mr. Obama that he could make recess appointments during a Senate vacation in 2012 even though the Senate was holding ‘pro forma’ sessions to avoid a formal recess, arguing that if the courts disagreed, the presidency would most likely be no worse off than if Mr. Obama did not challenge the tactic, officials said,” Savage wrote.

The Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Thursday that those so-called “recess appointments” were unconstitutional. The defeat was Obama’s twelfth unanimous loss at the Supreme Court since January 2012.

“Not every case in which the president has exceeded his authority has made it all the way to the Supreme Court,” Senator Mike Lee (R., Utah) a former law clerk to Justice Samuel Alito, told National Review Online. “The fact that his track record is as bad as it is in the Supreme Court . . . is yet another indication of the fact that we’ve got a president who is playing fast and loose with the Constitution.”

Most Popular

Culture

Equality and Envy

We are not the same. Neither men, nor women, nor races, nor ages, nor nationalities, nor in wealth, nor in training, nor in beauty. We are not equal in any way. And that is a reason to be proud and happy, because at the end of the day we are human and not the product of some factory. Let us once and for all ... Read More
Culture

Equality and Envy

We are not the same. Neither men, nor women, nor races, nor ages, nor nationalities, nor in wealth, nor in training, nor in beauty. We are not equal in any way. And that is a reason to be proud and happy, because at the end of the day we are human and not the product of some factory. Let us once and for all ... Read More

The Pollster Who Thinks Trump Is Ahead

The polling aggregator on the website RealClearPolitics shows the margin in polls led by Joe Biden in a blue font and the ones led by Donald Trump in red. For a while, the battleground states have tended to be uniformly blue, except for polls conducted by the Trafalgar Group. If you are a firm believer only in ... Read More

The Pollster Who Thinks Trump Is Ahead

The polling aggregator on the website RealClearPolitics shows the margin in polls led by Joe Biden in a blue font and the ones led by Donald Trump in red. For a while, the battleground states have tended to be uniformly blue, except for polls conducted by the Trafalgar Group. If you are a firm believer only in ... Read More
Elections

Biden Lies Again and Again

Joe Biden is a career liar and he lied some more in the debate, for instance when he dismissed the now well-supported New York Post story about Hunter Biden's business dealing as "a Russian plant." There is zero evidence for this. He offered this line: There are 50 former national intelligence folks who said ... Read More
Elections

Biden Lies Again and Again

Joe Biden is a career liar and he lied some more in the debate, for instance when he dismissed the now well-supported New York Post story about Hunter Biden's business dealing as "a Russian plant." There is zero evidence for this. He offered this line: There are 50 former national intelligence folks who said ... Read More