House Told Obama Bound U.S. To Climate Change Deal That Skirts Constitution
President Barack Obama bound the United States to an international agreement on climate change, but the administration’s decision to circumvent Congress to implement the deal has lawyers questioning its constitutionality.
Despite legally binding elements in the Paris Protocol, which require Senate ratification, negotiators worded the deal in a manner that enables Obama to handle it as an executive agreement and avoid congressional input.
“The president’s decision to treat the Paris agreement as an executive agreement instead of a treaty is just his latest use of executive power to achieve an end that he knows full well would not pass congressional muster,” Steven Groves, a lawyer who is an expert on treaties at The Heritage Foundation, testified Tuesday before a congressional committee.
Appearing at a hearing held by the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, Groves argued that the Obama administration knew the Republican-led Congress would reject the climate plan.