At Vox Andrew Prokop looks at how President Obama is expanding presidential power and the Republican lawsuit in response. He writes:
When the voting closed, the House was 225 to 201 in favor of filing suit. All but 5 Republicans voted in favor — those opposed believed the lawsuit didn't go far enough. Speaker John Boehner chided the Democrats: "Are you willing to let any president choose what laws to execute and what laws to change?" . . .
The lawsuit was limited to the delay of the employer mandate because Boehner's lawyers believed the narrow charge had the best chance of success in the courts. But House Republicans made clear they believed Obama's overreach was far broader. Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD) said the mandate delay was "only one of the many areas he has abused his executive authority." And Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO) argued that the worst was yet to come, citing news reports that Obama was planning new executive actions on immigration. "These are not lawful actions," Lamborn said. "These are the power-hungry actions of a president who refuses to work with Congress."
It was a charge that, a few short years before, would have sounded perfectly natural coming from Senator Barack Obama. "I taught constitutional law for 10 years," Obama said in March 2008. "I take the Constitution very seriously. The biggest problems that we're facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch and not go through Congress at all. And that's what I intend to reverse when I'm president of the United States of America."
But interviews with academic, legal, and policy experts make clear Obama has done little to roll back Bush's expansion of executive power — and that, instead, he's added a few innovations of his own. "The consensus is that he's not the disruptor in terms of presidential power that he purported to be," says Mitchel Sollenberger, a political scientist at the University of Michigan. "Instead, he's largely continued consolidating and strengthening it." . . .