U.S. Rep. Tom Graves voted for, and the House passed, the ENFORCE the Law Act, a bill to allow the House or Senate to sue the president of the United States if the president or Executive Branch employees fail to administer or enforce the law as required by Article II, Section 3, of the U.S. Constitution.
“The hallmark of the Obama presidency has become his rewriting and selective enforcement of the law, from unilaterally changing Obamacare to preventing the deportation of select illegal immigrants,” said Rep. Graves. “The president’s behavior suggests he views Congress as an inconvenience rather than a co-equal branch of government. This imperial mindset threatens the stability of our government and erodes the confidence Americans have in our democracy.
“Under the bill that passed today, Congress could have meaningful debate and decide to sue any president who may not be faithfully executing the law as the Constitution requires. If that course were chosen, the public would benefit from hearing the Executive Branch explain its actions in court, and then the Judicial Branch would issue its nonpartisan judgment. Under this approach, checks and balances would be at work, the Constitution would be upheld and our liberty would be protected.”
H.R. 4138 allows the Senate or the House, jointly or separately, upon the adoption of a resolution, to bring a civil action against the president if the president, the head of any department or agency, or any other officers or employees of the United States has established or implemented a formal or informal policy to refrain from enforcing or administering any law, regulation, or statute in violation of Article II, Section 3 of the Constitution of the United States. An action filed under the provisions of this legislation will be filed in a Federal district court and considered by a three-judge panel. The panel’s decision will be on an expedited track and is appealable directly to the Supreme Court.
Article II, Section 3, of the Constitution requires the president to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.”