House GOP Makes Case to Sue Obama

House Republicans say President Obama is overreaching with executive orders.
10:27 | 07/16/14

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Transcript for House GOP Makes Case to Sue Obama
-- -- As long -- -- -- -- and I'm not gonna apologize for trying to do some think. House Republicans want to take the president up on -- -- -- today. They brought a team at hand -- legal experts to Capitol Hill to help. Make their case hello I'm Michelle Franzen -- New York the issue again. Is Obama care kind this time though Republicans want to launch a lawsuit against President Obama for delaying certain parts of the law. They say he's over reaching his executive powers and infringing on bears here's Texas Republican Pete Sessions. Under President Obama the executive branch has increasingly gone beyond. The constraints of the constitution. In fact in a number of instances the president has gone beyond his article two powers. To enforce the law and has infringed upon or article one powers of congress. To right. The law. Dozens democratic colleague New York congresswoman Louise Slaughter is not convinced. She thinks Republicans have other motives. The lawsuit is clearly being used to appease members of the Republican Party -- will not rest until President Obama is charged with articles of impeachment. This is a partisan political stunt -- -- -- in the House of Representatives in November. Right as the mid term elections are happening. House majority is suing the president simply like doing his job. Slaughter there repeating a line the president himself used when discussing the issues last week in Austin, Texas. Analysts that we are joined by ABC news senior Washington correspondent -- felony thanks for joining us Jeff and a -- Republicans have an ironclad majority in the house who are they trying to condense with this hearing. -- big surprise that there's politics involved in this I'm sure anyone watching that hearing was. I'm stunned to see that but look you right Republicans do have a strong majority in the house so this so litigation this lawsuit is going to proceed. A couple interesting things happen to -- -- -- from the hearing it's not necessarily. Along. A partisan lines of Democrats and Republicans one of the key witnesses. Here who Republicans brought forward. A law professor and he believes that said this is the moments that congress should take a stand and he says look I've voted for President Obama. He's a Democrat but he was a witness brought forward by Republicans. Who who's believes in the constitution and he says that look I think that this president has overreach their authority so we really have a couple things going on here. On one side we have the political argument a very predictable mid term election year fight over obamacare and on. I'm at the same time there is a constitutional argument has this president's. I'm effectively overreached his authority here so. It's a good question that's going on but the whole point of it here is what is the remedy. -- going to throw the president out of office I'm and that's where things get a little complicated. And that's talk about if Republicans were to win this potential suit. The president would have to enforce all the Affordable Care Act a law they want off the books how to explain. Which is why this get so complicated you're absolutely right Michelle if they would win this lawsuit and that's a lot of it's down the road here what would have to happen first is a federal judge has to say that. The House of Representatives actually has standing to sue the president that is never. Happened before but if that happened. And there was standing to sue the president effectively if Republicans would be -- that the president -- -- enforce the law that they opposed. Back. -- during all the arguments over the health care a -- so. Very complicated but speaker Boehner has tried to simplify he's trying to say look this is an important moment for the institution. Of congress. The separate branches of government legislative and executive and they think that this is a moment to make a stand but it just happens to be -- its it's good politics for them to do this as well. And Democrats also weighing in here is house Democrat Jim McGovern he -- congresswoman slaughter. Opposes any idea of a student is firing back at his colleagues let's listen. If I were President Obama wrote congress -- the -- leadership for its gross incompetence the American people should -- the house leadership for emotional pain and suffering. I want to thank our witnesses for being here and I'm sorry that they're being asked to spend their valuable time when this you have been brought. Here I think under. It false creek Texas. A you have them being brought you in the pretense that this is somehow all on the level -- -- -- you it is not on the level. So everyone getting their sound bites and but what actually happened at this suit or to go forward what court here. What would happen if this suit -- -- forward a couple things before that this is a meeting we're seeing right there the hearing was coming in a rules committee hearing so it's just a very. The first step of the process the full house will vote on this. Probably at the end of July. And then to be the -- actually go ahead and file a lawsuit table. Retain some of the best a constitutional lawyers in this. In all of Washington and they will file suit with the federal court in US district court here in Washington and then a judge will have to do. And -- decide if the House of Representatives has standing to sue the president yet it has. A court has never ruled. In favor of someone suing the president in terms of standing in this issue I'm it's only been tried a couple times before and -- and very different circumstances liberal congressman Dennis Kucinich from Ohio and a group of -- a small group of congressman. Actually tried suing President Obama. They believe he overreached his I'm executive authority by invading Libya they believe that she violated the war powers act the judge said not so fast you -- -- standing you cannot sue the president so. You know there is no precedent here for a judge. A deciding that -- the house represented says have standing. To actually -- the president. And in this hearing house Republicans picked a number of legal experts to make their case today here's Elizabeth price Foley allow professor from Florida International University. All. This reveals a glaring deficiency in those who criticized the committee's draft resolution. States. Can -- to preserve their power. The executive branch can sued to preserve its power but somehow my magically congress -- -- I guess under this logic congress as some sort institutional orphan that uniquely incapable being injured enough. To establish standing to -- Now Foley's seems pretty convinced today but how she always felt that way and why -- these lawyers and particular considered. A court. She is not always -- that would actually -- a wrote a piece earlier this year arguing that now essentially. The there has to be what she calls a benevolent suspension. Of the law she believes that. That this was wasn't necessarily the president. -- usurping the -- legislative branch authority she has side is taking a bit of a different. Approach right now but she has been behind this lawsuit from the beginning she believes that. That they congress. Should also take a stand just her argument in this case was slightly different and some of her earlier writings but. Look as in any. Backed type of a legal case you can find experts on both sides -- argue both sides of the so essentially what we saw. Here this morning in the in the rules committee meeting in the house was eight a mock trial if you will. The different sides of the argument. I'm a least a couple different sides. Is the house in its. Right to sue the president and a couple experts said no it's not so in there's no -- answered in this necessarily until a judge. Has final say. And so it seems though the ball is rolling on this so how does this latest chapter of house Republicans vs the White House. Look like it will play out and do they also have to convince the public to spend taxpayer money. -- they don't necessarily have to convince the public because they're going ahead to do this the House of Representatives. Are going to vote. The members of the house -- going to vote at the end of this month -- -- move forward with this and there is a question of how much this is going to a cost how expensive is this going to be. Democrats are really trying to make this an issue in fact President Obama in his weekly radio address just last Saturday. He -- minded Americans you know that the taxpayer -- is actually funding this so lawsuit. So we're not exactly sure how much it will be the estimates that. We believe will be will be at least two million dollars perhaps even more. If it goes forward that comes out and to have been just be a general house expensive -- taxpayers are paying for this so. Attribution to see if some Tea Party conservatives some fiscal conservatives. Thinks this is a wise approach of course it's a drop in the bucket in terms of the overall budget but. Democrats definitely are trying to make an argument that this is a frivolous. Expense it's not worth. The money but it is going forward -- -- this is going to go forward and one other instinct thing we've heard a lot of talk of impeachment. I'm sort of surrounding this and speaker Boehner and Republican leaders say look we are not. Going to move toward impeachment we're doing a lawsuit instead. And interestingly that's -- the things really going on here the Republican leaders wanted. Some kind of symbolic. Symbol here in this midterm election year that they were trying to push back against the president. So few of them came up with the idea what's file a lawsuit against -- that will tamp down the talk of impeachment. It actually is done a little bit of the opposite -- -- Increased to the at least mainstream -- Of impeachment here but dot -- -- aren't going to be any formal impeachment proceedings that is just kind of fringe -- at the moment so this lawsuit is really the biggest remedy that they have. And it is no way going to -- finalized before the midterm Election Day perhaps not even before this president leaves office. Does not look that way ABC's -- felony on Capitol Hill think he was always. Michelle -- you can keep up with the story in real time by downloading the ABC news happened starring this story for exclusive updates on the go. And the hearing is also still streaming live. For now I'm Michelle France in the New York.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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