- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 5, 2014

A new Republican-sponsored bill would open the doors for lawsuits to go forth against the Obama administration, a dramatic measure aimed at curbing the powers of the president when it’s perceived he’s broken federal law.

Called the ENFORCE the Laws Act, the bill is a direct response to Mr. Obama’s ordered delays to certain Obamacare implementations, and to his 2011 executive decision to halt deportation proceedings against illegals who haven’t been charged with crimes, The Hill reported.

“This administration’s disregard for the law has reached an unprecedented level from a constitutional perspective,” said Rep. Trey Gowdy, the lead sponsor of the bill, The Hill reported. “We have pursued certain remedies afforded to Congress to address executive overreach but these efforts have been thwarted.”

The bill gives the House or Senate the right to authorize a lawsuit against the executive branch, if the White House disregards or fails to enforce laws that were duly passed in Congress. The congressional authorization basically sets in motion an expedited process for the lawsuit, sending it to a federal court for hearing by a three-judge panel, and then — if necessary — on to the U.S. Supreme Court.

It’s cosponsored by Rep. Darrell Issa — who heads up the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee — and by Rep. Bob Goodlatte, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

“This legislation adds balance to an executive branch that has grown so bloated and convoluted that it now comfortably abuses its power,” Mr. Issa said, in The Hill. “This isn’t how the framers of our Constitution envisioned our system working.”

Rep. Jim Gerlach, who brought forth a similar bill a few weeks ago, has added his name to the list of 17 Republican cosponsors.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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