By Direction of the Chairman

Below is a statement from House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Congressman Steve King (R-Iowa), the chairman of the Task Force, on the hearing.

“Throughout his tenure in office, President Obama has used his pen and phone to effectively legislate from the Oval Office. The President has unilaterally rewritten his signature healthcare law to change the employer mandate compliance date as well as use taxpayer dollars to pay subsidies to insurance companies, even though Congress has not authorized such spending. Additionally, the President has changed our nation’s immigration laws by executive decree to allow millions of unlawful immigrants to stay and work here despite the fact that Congress has not granted that authority to the President.

“These unilateral, unconstitutional actions pose a threat to our Republic’s separation of powers. The Task Force on Executive Overreach will begin its examination of the President’s abuse of authority in domestic affairs and look for solutions to end this growing problem.”

Background on the Task Force: The Task Force on Executive Overreach is authorized for six months and will study the impact the increase in presidential and executive branch power has had on the ability of Congress to conduct oversight of the executive branch, the lack of transparency that furthers unchecked executive power, and the constitutional requirement of the President to faithfully execute the law. Additionally, the task force will review the tools at the disposal of the Congress to restore the proper balance of powers and hold the executive branch accountable. It will also make recommendations where there are deficiencies, including legislative solutions.

Witnesses

Name Occupation Organization Testimony Truth in Testimony
Elizabeth Papez Partner Winston & Strawn LLP
Josh Blackman Associate Professor of Law South Texas College of Law/Houston
Simon Lazarus Senior Counsel Constitutional Accountability Center
Elizabeth Slattery Legal Fellow Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies; The Heritage Foundation

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