White House's Palmieri Defends Executive Action: "It Doesn't Tear Up The Constitution"


JOE SCARBOROUGH, MORNING JOE: What's your response to The Washington Post editorial that said that the president's frustration with Congress "doesn't grant the president license to tear up the Constitution."

JENNIFER PALMIERI, WHITE HOUSE: Well, it doesn't, and that's not what he's doing. Whatever -- the steps he's going to take you'll see are well within his authority to do that and we'll have all the legal justification to show that. You know, the Speaker asked us to wait for a year, excuse me, he asked us to wait for six months to give them time to act to pass a bill. It's been a year. And, you know, waiting anymore is not a cost-free enterprise. There are millions of people that are here that are working that are willing to pay taxes, like some certainty in their life and, you know, at this point after it's been two years since we first proposed the bill, a year since the House Republicans started working on it, there's just not a credible reason to ask people to wait.

SCARBOROUGH: That's the frustration part of that equation.

PALMIERI: But it's not --

SCARBOROUGH: You are talking about all the reasons why the president's frustrated and I understand that frustration. And I think that people who have seen as negotiations with John Boehner and know the steps that he took in 2013 understand that frustration but again the line from The Washington Post, "the president's frustration from Congress doesn't grant the president license to tear up the Constitution."

Is the president concerned that The Washington Post editorial page, this is not a right-wing blog, the The Washington Post editorial page believes that this action "tears up the Constitution."

PALMIERI: But it doesn't tear up the Constitution. And you will see -- everyone will see that it doesn't.

SCARBOROUGH: That's your conclusion, I'm asking if you all are concerned that even The Washington Post editorial page suggests that it does.

PALMIERI: No, we're not concerned about that. The president will announce what he's doing tonight and we will explain it and people can look at the legal justification and make that determination. But this is not about the president's frustration with Congress. There are -- you know, there are, like I said, there are millions of people that we can help right now, begin to solve the problem.

It's been two years. There's just not any credible reason to ask these people to continue to wait and you know Congress has free will. They can pick up and the legislation or add other legislation and act whenever they like. The president wants to work to do that. But at this point the president just feels like he has to act to solve the small part because there are going to be people that are disappointed because we won't solve the problem.

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