Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 7, 2016

Democrat Wants Accountability on Obama Lawsuit

UNITED STATES - JUNE 19: Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, holds his weekly on camera news conference in the Capitol on Thursday, June 19, 2014. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Boehner faces questions over the cost of the House lawsuit against the White House. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 4:35 p.m. | The ranking Democrat on the House Administration Committee, Robert A. Brady, is demanding some oversight on Speaker John A. Boehner’s lawsuit against President Barack Obama.

Brady sent a letter to the Ohio Republican saying he expects Republicans to be “open and transparent” about how much money they use “in pursuing this highly dubious and partisan lawsuit.”

The Pennsylvania Democrat, as the ranking member of the House Administration Committee, seems to want some say over who handles the case, and he wants “normal oversight” on the contract.

Boehner is asking the House this month to approve filing a lawsuit against the president for not enforcing the employer mandate on the 2010 health care law.

Here is the full text of the Brady letter:

Dear Speaker Boehner:

Within the draft resolution to initiate a lawsuit against the President, we learned that you intend to seek authorization to “employ the services of outside counsel and other experts.” Such authority clearly falls under the jurisdiction of the Committee on House Administration, and as such, I am writing to express my expectation that Republicans will be open and transparent about the use of taxpayer money in pursuing this highly dubious and partisan lawsuit.

As evidenced by House Republicans’ conduct in the $2.3 million failed effort to defend the discriminatory and unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act in the courts, strong bipartisan oversight is clearly necessary in any plan to hire outside counsel. The Republican majority must not be permitted to use taxpayer dollars as a slush fund to award a no-bid contract to high-priced, politically connected Republican lawyers without any transparency or accountability to the House or the American people.

Our opposition to the deeply partisan basis of your lawsuit in no way diminishes the need for normal oversight of the terms of any contract signed by Republican Leadership obligating the House to pay millions of dollars on private attorneys. Therefore, I expect you will honor regular order through my committee, even with this highly irregular lawsuit.

The American people deserve to know how and where their tax dollars are being spent, and House Administration Committee Democrats insist on regular consultation and transparency in the selection criteria and process, cost, and lobbying connections of any counsel or experts hired in the name of the House.

Robert Brady
Ranking Member, House Administration Committee


Correction: An earlier version of this post reported, due to an editing error, that the House would consider the lawsuit this week. The vote is expected later this month.


  • Brenda Huddleston

    Are these the same people who have no problem asking the American people to spend $3.7 billion on illegal immigrants. I don’t recall any transparency in that request….only to approve it right away with no information as to how it would be used. Really, Mr Brady? I don’t think you are really worried about us, just the damage this lawsuit could do to the Democrats. You just want to control that, not our tax apyer dollars.

    • Butch Darling

      Madam, the $3.7B has built-in oversight. The suit doesn’t. The suit is merely another means of depleting the Treasury of meaningful funds that may be directed to help the democratic process of assisting people in distress. Your racial undertones are now exposed as screaming mimi’s.

      • A Semper Fi Marine

        awww – there it is – The proverbial “Race Card”! Because THAT’s ALL you have! Address the ISSUE and maybe the “TRUTH will set you FREE”! There is NO Racism in DEMANDING to POTUS comply with the SAME Laws you and I are held to. So quit trying to interject any – a corrupt Prez – of ANY RACE – is STILL CORRUPT

        • Nick Anderson

          Actually, ALL there is racism, there is absolutely zero legitimate grievances you can file against this president, but that hasn’t stopped you from making them up anyway, despite the fact that he has issued fewer executive orders than any president since FDR, by any logical, non racist, non stupid, interpretation of the facts, he’s less of an imperialist than Ronald Reagan, hallowed be thy name.

        • LumberJock

          You’re the silent and odorless fart who flunked out of Navy boot and can only make empty accusations!

          • A Semper Fi Marine

            We learned how to hit the Cross Hairs – Scumbags are th first targets

          • LumberJock

            But you obviously failed to learn when — as well as whom to target.
            You aren’t a typical Marine, nor would I expect Marines – like my son – would endorse your seditious threat.

          • A Semper Fi Marine

            There is no “threat”, implied or otherwise to any lawful action. But IF your son is a Maine, then he too would support and defend against ALL enemies, Foreign OR Domestic. If that means a spineless scumbag, so be it. You obviously aren’t a Marine, couldn’t hack it? – so I wouldn’t even expect you to understand.

          • LumberJock

            Son endorses my perspective. 36 years of active duty belies your spurious accusation. I am a patriot — who has defended our values at home and elsewhere. I suggest you spent less than a full tour before getting a ‘Section-8′. Too bad we spent so much on you to get so little in return, but that is better than keeping you on active duty.

      • docb

        Wasting more money and hiding has been all the gop bags have done since 2010. Oversight is necessary..Note that Gowdy and the 5 Benghazi hearing are in hiding…provably to obscure their mendacity till right before the midterms! Red meat for the dying old white base…these stunts!

        Ehtically and morally bankrupt right wingers!

    • A Semper Fi Marine

      You NEVER want a “Good” crises to go to waste

  • Butch Darling

    With the track record of partisan lawsuit and mcconnell’s declaration of war on the President, you’d think the orange gouda would seek some popular accounting of their which hunt.

    Ya’ll know what that is doancha? Which hunt is gonna hurt the President?

    • Iben_Hadd

      Do you refer witch which or which witch?

      • LumberJock

        Which. It’s a pun, exposing the lengths to which the party of ‘NO!’ will go to obstruct governance, destruct government and insult the voters of the U.S.

  • Brenda Huddleston

    Yes Butch, saying that I would feel the same about a white President’s policies if they were the same as this President’s policies, is really a racial undertone screaming mimi. Where was the oversight on that 3.7B before the republicans didn’t roll over and sign off on it sight unseen? The Republicans have given in on Obamas wishes way too often and we are in financial trouble.

    • Butch Darling

      The republi-can’ts have given NOTHING to this President. Unlike your icon, he was elected and re-elected. Your icon was appointed by an activist court that has repeatedly presumed to rule on matters not before the court with cert.
      You may try to bring-up the PPACA, but that’s a Heritage Foundation plan dating from the 1994 era and used to undermine the Clinton initiative. You may try to introduce the stimulus, but that also was a republi-can’t plan. Obama’s was 2-1/2 times as much and would have actually revived the economy, which republi-can’ts can’t have. The preferred republi-can’t stimulus bailed out the bankers, insurance companies, hedge funds, bond traitors and other manipulators that add nothing to production or GNP.
      The scorched earth policy of mcconnell, boehner and the Tee-Potty will – at this point in history, will have to look back, not forward to see its high spot. You people are morally repugnant, liars, cheats, theives and so Stalinesque that you belong in another time and on another continent.

      • Jack

        Right the Republicans have given nothing to this President. This President has STOLEN everything because he is a CROOK.

        • Butch Darling

          Fortunately, when engaging you in conversation, we need not worry about keeping our facts accurate or challenging the efficacy of your factoids or counter factuals. You present only crap that also fails to rise to the level of opinion.
          We may dismiss you immediately without recourse

  • A Semper Fi Marine

    Well – if Boehner is as “Open and Transparent” as the administration, not a problem.


    While life continues to go on as normal for many in our country, there are still more than three million unemployed families without an extension of benefits since late last December. While the republican senate fought tooth & nail to pass the Koch brother’s oil pipeline bill, they totally rejected passing the extension bill, which would have helped these millions of families. Now, both political parties have walked away from the issue, leaving these families in financial ruin and deep poverty without recourse. Billions are spent on foreign aid and the military, but the poor & unemployed are left without help. Where’s our country’s priorities and compassion?

  • anAmericanMom

    Now 3. 8 billion, already a thumb on the scale.

    Tear up treaties, stop funding corrupt countries who do not care for THEIR humanitarian crisis.

  • Shalom

    Whether it’s murdering the unborn or attempting to deny care to the born, like Sarah Murnaghan, today’s liberalism is basically a death cult.

  • Cool Ranch, Texas

    In related video, Trey Gowdy calls out delusional lunatic Nancy Peolosi for being “mind numbingly” stupid:

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