Cornyn: Obama Using Exec Actions Due to 'Crisis of Competence'

Tuesday, 28 Jan 2014 02:03 PM

By Wanda Carruthers

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The decision of President Barack Obama to threaten the use of executive action to enact his policies exhibits a "crisis of competence," Sen. John Cornyn said Tuesday.

"The problems the president has are two-fold. One is a crisis of credibility, and the other is a crisis of competence," the Texas Republican told Fox News' "America's Newsroom."

The question of competence was raised by some members of Congress who questioned President Obama's leadership by not working with Congress on legislative issues. Cornyn indicated President Obama seemed to be "going it alone" and not engaging Congress on matters before the country.

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President Obama is expected to emphasize his intent to use executive action in his State of the Union address Tuesday evening. He announced Tuesday he would raise the minimum wage by executive order for new federal contract workers.

"He's decided, rather than to lead, to play small ball. And, to do things that he's said himself you can't do in a system of separation of powers and under our constitutional system," he said.

Cornyn, who is Republican whip and a member of the Senate Budget Committee, explained there was little the president could do through executive order, other than "superficial sorts of actions."

Credibility of the president came into question after statements made by him and members of his administration about Obamacare proved to be untrue, Cornyn said.

"People don't believe them anymore, after the president promised that, 'If you like what you have, you can keep it with your healthcare,' and the innumerable other promises that have been made," he said.

Republicans want to work with the White House and Democrats, but have been "shut out of the process," Cornyn indicated. He said Republicans have passed "well over 100 pieces of legislation" to help the economy, but (Senate Majority Leader) "Harry Reid and the White House have shut those down."

Cornyn said Republicans and Democrats in the past had been able to find ways to work together.

"We have always had divided government and done big things," he said.

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