Thu April 5, 2012
McConnell to President Obama: "Back Off" the Supreme Court
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is blasting the White House over remarks made by President Obama regarding the Supreme Court's health care law hearings. During a speech Thursday to the Rotary Club of Lexington, Senator McConnell said the President crossed "a dangerous line this week."
Saying the high court should be independent of pressure from the White House, McConnell told his audience: "I would suggest the President back off. Let the Court do its work."
On Monday, President Obama said he thought the Supreme Court would uphold is health care law, including the controversial individual mandate requiring every America to purchase some form of health insurance. Obama said a repeal of the law would be "judicial activism" on an "unprecedented, extraordinary" scale.
A three-judge panel from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals responded to the President's remarks by ordering the US Justice Department to clarify the administration's stance on judicial review. That DOJ response is due Thursday.
At his speech in Lexington, Senator McConnell told the audience this wasn't the first time Mr. Obama had mistreated the Supreme Court.
"Two years ago, he used a State of the Union Address to publicly chastise the Court for its decision in another case he didn’t like — with members of the Court sitting just a few feet away," said the Louisville Republican. "He looked at the line that wisely separates the three branches of government, and stepped right over it. But what the President did this week went even farther. With his words, he was no longer trying to embarrass the Court after a decision; rather, he tried to intimidate it before a decision has been made. And that should be intolerable to all of us."