In a one-finger salute to Republican House Speaker John Boehner, President Obama has vowed to continue his use of executive orders in order to get work done in Washington, DC.
Boehner announced last week plans to sue the president over his use of executive actions to increase the minimum wage for employees of federal contractors, end federal pay discrimination and enforce new EPA regulations, saying the president has overstepped his constitutional boundaries.
Seemingly unfazed by the threat, the president has promised to press on.
“Republicans in Congress keep blocking or voting down almost every serious idea,” said Obama in his weekly address. “This year alone they’ve said no to raising the minimum wage, no to fair pay, no to student loan reform, no to extending unemployment insurance. This obstruction keeps the system rigged for those at the top and rigged against the middle class. And as long as they insist on doing it, I’ll keep taking actions on my own. I’ll do my job.”
A report by the American Presidency Project at the University of California, Santa Barbara, finds that Obama has issued fewer executive orders than any other president since Franklin Roosevelt. In fact, President Obama’s yearly average of 33.58 executive orders is lower than any president in 130 years. By comparison, George W. Bush issued a yearly average of 36.38 executive orders, Clinton an average of 45.5 and Reagan 47.
“The president is simply saying, ‘Congress, if you’re not going to do your job of actually passing laws… I’m going to do what I can within the confines of the law to make things work,'” said Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-CA). “He’s not rewriting the law. He’s simply implementing it.”