Constitutionally Challenged

- November 2, 2016

Today, Obama Urged Voters To Support A Candidate That Would Respect The Constitution…The Same Constitution He's Trampled On Over And Over While In Office


  • Today, Obama warned voters about supporting a candidate that would "disrespect the constitution."
  • Just months ago, the Supreme Court blocked Obama's executive actions on immigration that sought to defer deportations for millions.
  • The Supreme Court found that Obama overstepped his authority by making recess appointments while the Senate was still in session.
  • The Supreme Court rejected Obama's energy regulations that sought to close coal-fired power plants.
  • Obama's landmark regulation, Waters of the U.S., was struck down in multiple federal courts.


While Speaking In Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Obama Made The Case Against A President That Would "Disrespect The Constitution." PRESIDENT OBAMA: "If you disrespect the constitution before you're elected president … then imagine what you'll do when you actually have the power to violate the Constitution along those lines?" (President Barack Obama, Remarks At The University Of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, 11/2/16)

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This Summer, The Supreme Court Affirmed A Ruling That Found Obama's Executive Actions On Immigration Overstepped His Executive Powers

In June, The Supreme Court Blocked Obama's Plan To Shield An Estimated 4 Million Illegal Immigrants From Deportation. "The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday blocked President Barack Obama's plan to spare millions of immigrants in the country illegally from deportation in a split ruling that heartened political foes who had accused him of overstepping his powers… The plan was tailored to let roughly 4 million people - those who have lived illegally in the United States at least since 2010, have no criminal record and have children who are U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents - get into a program that shields them from deportation and supplies work permits." (Lawrence Hurley, "Split Supreme Court Blocks Obama Immigration Plan," Reuters, 6/24/16)

It Left In Place The Decision That Found Obama Overstepped His Authority By Bypassing Congress. "Obama unveiled his plan in November 2014. It was quickly challenged in court by Republican-governed Texas and 25 other states that argued that Obama overstepped the powers granted to him by the U.S. Constitution by infringing upon the authority of Congress. His unilateral executive action bypassed the Republican-led Congress. Because the court was split, a 2015 lower-court ruling invalidating Obama's plan was left in place. The plan never was implemented because the lower courts had blocked it." (Lawrence Hurley, "Split Supreme Court Blocks Obama Immigration Plan," Reuters, 6/24/16)

The Supreme Court Rule That Obama's Recess Appointments Were Unconstitutional

In 2014, The Supreme Court Ruled That Obama Exceed His Constitutional Authority By Making Appointments To The NLRB While The Senate Was Still In Session. "The Supreme Court ruled unanimously Thursday that President Obama exceeded his constitutional authority in making high-level government appointments in 2012 when he declared the Senate to be in recess and unable to act on the nominations. Obama made appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) at a time when the Senate was holding pro forma sessions every three days precisely to thwart the president's ability to exercise the power." (Robert Barnes, "Supreme Court Rebukes Obama On Recess Appointments," The Washington Post , 6/26/14)

The Supreme Court Rejected Obama's EPA Overreaching Power Plant Regulations

In 2015, The Supreme Court Rejected The EPA's Mercury Rule That Would Close Down Coal-Fired Power Plants, Arguing That The Regulation Went Too Far. "The U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the Obama administration's effort to limit toxic pollution from the nation's coal-fired power plants, leaving the fate of a landmark environmental regulation in doubt. The 5-4 decision Monday went against an Environmental Protection Agency mercury rule that forces utilities to shutter old coal plants or invest billions of dollars in equipment to clean up the emissions from their smokestacks. The court said the EPA should have considered the costs and benefits before deciding whether to impose those limits on the toxic emissions." (Mark Drajem and Greg Stohr, "EPA Loses At U.S. High Court On Power-Plant Emissions Rule," Bloomberg, 6/29/15)

The Court Wrote That The "EPA Strayed Well Beyond The Bounds Of Reasonable Interpretation…" " While the agency is afforded a certain level of power to interpret the law, the court wrote, 'EPA strayed well beyond the bounds of reasonable interpretation in concluding that cost is not a factor relevant to the appropriateness of regulating power plants.'" (Timothy Cama and Lydia Wheeler, "Supreme Court Overturns Landmark EPA Air Pollution Rule," The Hill, 6/29/15)

And Multiple Federal Courts Found Obama's EPA Water Regulations Are Unconstitutional

A Federal Judge In Nebraska Found The "Obama Administration's Interpretation Of Its Jurisdiction 'Exceptionally Expansive' And Blocked The Waters Of The US Regulation. "Judge Ralph Erickson of the District Court for the District of North Dakota found that the 13 states suing to block the rule met the conditions necessary for a preliminary injunction, including that they would likely be harmed if courts didn't act and that they are likely to succeed when their underlying lawsuit against the rule is decided…'While the exact amount of land that would be subject to the increase is hotly disputed, the agencies admit to an increase in control over those traditional state-regulated waters of between 2.84 to 4.65 percent. Immediately upon the rule taking effect, the rule will irreparably diminish the states' power over their waters' he continued, calling the Obama administration's interpretation of its jurisdiction 'exceptionally expansive.'" (Timothy Cama, "Federal Judge Blocks Obama's Water Rule," The Hill, 8/27/15)

The Court Of Appeals For The Sixth Circuit Issued A Stay On Obama's Waters Of The US Rule, Which Prevented The EPA's Regulations From Going Into Effect And Allowed The Court More Time To Decide "Whether This Exercise Of Executive Power…Is Proper Under The Dictates Of Federal Law." "In a 2-1 ruling, the Cincinnati-based Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit delivered a stinging defeat to Obama's most ambitious effort to keep streams and wetlands clean, saying it looks likely that the rule, dubbed Waters of the United States, is illegal… 'A stay allows for a more deliberate determination whether this exercise of executive power, enabled by Congress and explicated by the Supreme Court, is proper under the dictates of federal law,' the court said." (Timothy Cama, "Court Blocks Obama's Water Rule Nationwide," The Hill, 10/09/15)

A Federal Court Struck Down The Obama Administration's Rule On Fracking, Noting That The U.S. Bureau Of Land Management Did Not Have The Power To Enact Laws. "A federal judge in Wyoming has struck down the Obama administration's regulations on hydraulic fracturing, ruling that the U.S. Bureau of Land Management doesn't have the authority to establish rules over fracking on federal and Indian lands. In the ruling on Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Scott Skavdahl said Congress had not granted the BLM that power, and had instead chosen to specifically exclude fracking from federal oversight. Skavdahl made it clear what he was - and wasn't - considering in his ruling. 'The issue before this Court is not whether hydraulic fracturing is good or bad for the environment or the citizens of the United States,' he wrote. The question, instead, is 'whether Congress has delegated to the Department of Interior legal authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing. It has not.'" (Camila Domonoske, "Federal Judge Strikes Down Obama Administration's Fracking Rules," NPR, 6/22/16)

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