President Barack Obama has launched a "fundamental attack" on the nation's freedom with his overreaching use of executive power — and a new House bill has been designed to stop that, U.S. Rep Tom Rice says.
"The framers of our system of government ... fought a revolution to escape the bonds of a monarch — somebody who both makes the law and enforces the law," Rice told Joe Concha, guest host of "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"What they put in the Constitution was a separation of powers — the executive branch enforces the law but the legislative branch makes the law — and the president is trying to assume both of those roles.
"That's a fundamental attack on our freedom, and the prosperity that this country has enjoyed for the last 200 years arose from our freedom, our freedom to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps, to pursue our own dreams, and to pursue our own prosperity," he said Tuesday.
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Rice, a South Carolina Republican, says a House resolution now being circulated would bring a lawsuit against the president to end his flaunting of power.
"If it passes by a majority vote of the House only, the House as an institution will bring a lawsuit against the president to enforce the Constitution," he said, adding that the bill is picking up steam.
"When the president ... goes out and says things like, I've got a pen and I've got a phone and if Congress doesn't act on my agenda, I'll act on my own — every time he does that I pick up 10 more co-sponsors. He's doing a great job of getting me co-sponsors."
Rice says that whatever Obama's motivation is behind using executive power to sidestep Congress, "what he's doing's illegal."
"Just think, if the president has the power to decide that a tax is going to be enforced or not in a given year, could the next president just say, well, look, I don't like Obamacare at all, therefore, I'm not going to enforce any of the mandates?" he said.
"Or could the next president say, you know, the capital gains rate is too high, therefore, I'm not going to enforce it? Or the national tax bracket's too high? … If we just let this slide now, are we really even relevant? This is something that we have got to move on."
"When we initially proposed this, the leadership thought it was radical and my response was what we're talking about here is not radical. What the president's doing is radical. He took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution, and he's not. He's wiping his feet on the Constitution."
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