Boehner on Obama's Immigration Action: 'He's Going to Burn Himself' (Video)

Boehner, in his first post-election press conference, warned the president against unilateral action on immigration. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

In his first news conference after Tuesday's elections, Speaker John A. Boehner had stern words for President Barack Obama and his expected executive action on immigration, telling the president he was inviting "big trouble" if he continued to act without Congress on issues such as immigration.  

Asked whether the president would be "poisoning the well" with Congress if he issued an executive action on immigration, Boehner offered this advice: "When you play with matches, you take the risk of burning yourself. And he's going to burn himself if he continues to go down this path."  

"The American people made it clear on Election Day," Boehner said, "they want to get things done — and they don't want the president acting on a unilateral basis."  

It's unclear what ramifications the president would face from the House, but, last year House Republicans argued they couldn't act on immigration because they did not trust Obama to implement their legislation as intended. Republicans would almost certainly continue this argument with other pieces of legislation should the president go-it-alone on immigration, and they could seek legal means to deal with the executive action.  

Boehner has planned to sue the president for months over his changes to insurance coverage mandates in the 2010 health care law, though the lawsuit has not officially been filed.  

The administration has said he plans to act on immigration before the Christmas holidays, though officials have not offered an official timeline.

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