WASHINGTON (CBS DC/AP) — Former Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan criticized President Barack Obama’s assertion that he will bypass Congress and act unilaterally to enact laws with executive orders.
Speaking to CBS News before Obama’s State of the Union address, the chairman of the House Budget Committee said the president “wants to go around the Constitution.”
“If you want to write a law, the elected representatives here in the House and the Senate, the legislative branch, they’re the ones who write laws. Presidents don’t write laws,” Ryan stated.
Hoping to gain the political initiative, Obama summoned lawmakers to create jobs, overhaul immigration laws, combat climate change and more, and said he would act unilaterally where possible if they won’t compromise.
“America does not stand still, and neither will I,” the president declared. “So whatever and wherever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.”
During his address, Obama touched on immigration reform, calling on Congress to pass legislation this year.
Ryan told CBS News he believes there is hope for immigration reform without giving amnesty.
“There’s a way of doing that – not talking about citizenship – there’s a way of doing that where a person can earn legalization,” Ryan explained. “Some like a probationary status, where they have to go through acknowledging that they broke the law and make amends with that — whether it’s paying back taxes, fines, learning English, learning civics, making sure that they do things to make amends with the fact that they did not follow our law. And making sure that the federal government does its job securing the border.”
Ryan also said that there will not be another debt ceiling crisis last month after coming to an eleventh-hour deal in October to avoid default.
“We will not default,” Ryan said. “It will not be in jeopardy again.”
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