Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., had stern words for Speaker John A. Boehner's, R-Ohio, developing lawsuit targeting the president Thursday, dismissing the proposed action as "subterfuge" and "totally irresponsible."
"It's a distraction," Pelosi said of an intended lawsuit accusing President Barack Obama of overstepping his constitutional authority with the use of executive actions.
Pelosi, who noted she dealt with similar calls from Democrats in the later years of George W. Bush's presidency, said she decided not to bring forward articles of impeachment on Bush because “it wasn’t something I wanted to put the country through.”
The California Democrat said Thursday that Bush had "sent us into war based on a false representation," something she called "shameful, irresponsible and wrong," but she said did not want to move forward with impeachment, "because of what it would mean for the American people.” Pelosi noted that what President Bill Clinton did to bring forward articles of impeachment was "stupid," but that his marital infidelities had nothing to do with public policy.
Boehner also addressed the calls for Obama's impeachment during his press conference Thursday, and the Ohio Republican shed light on what he says to colleagues who want to impeach the president.
"I told them I disagree," Boehner said.
The lawsuit seems to be a middle road for Republicans who want to address the president's executive actions — Boehner said the lawsuit is actually more about the legislative branch being "disadvantaged" by the executive branch than it is about executive actions — but he reiterated that he doesn't want to impeach Obama.
Still, Pelosi implied that the lawsuit was just a distraction from the House's inability to pass meaningful laws.
“What are we talking about here?" Pelosi said. "Let’s get to work. We are legislators. They’re not effective legislators so they’re changing the subject.”