Prominent House Republican Paul Ryan sharpened his criticism of President Obama's "pen-and-phone" strategy of advancing his agenda without getting legislation passed, saying Sunday morning that "we have an increasingly lawless presidency."
"Presidents don't write laws; Congress does," Ryan told ABC's George Stephanopoulos. The president's executive actions relating to the implementation of the new health care law and other initiatives exceeded the scope of the presidency and have impinged on the authority of the legislature, according to Ryan.
The Wisconsin Republican added that "executive orders are one thing, orders that change the statute are another.”
In addition to the president's unilateral changes to the health care law, the president laid out a set of policies he can enact without Congress in his State of the Union Address last week, including raising the minimum wage for federal contractors. "I am concerned about this trend," Ryan said, in which "if congress doesn't give me the law I want, I'm going to go do it myself. ... That's not the way the Constitution works.”