Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton revealed Wednesday he filed a lawsuit against President Biden over the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 that Biden signed into law late last year.
In a press release, the Texas attorney general claimed the $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill was unlawfully signed and enacted.
He argued the Constitution does not permit proxy voting for making a quorum and pointed to the number of members of the House who were physically present versus those who voted by proxy at the time.
He contends the House didn’t have the necessary quorum when it passed the bill in December.
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When the House approved it, there were 225 yea, 201 nay and 1 present votes. Two hundred and twenty-six representatives chose to do remote voting by proxy, a document from the Clerk of the House showed. The legislation became law with Biden’s signature Dec. 29.
Paxton announced his office had filed the suit Wednesday while appearing on “The Bottom Line” with hosts Dagen McDowell and Sean Duffy.
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“For 200 and forty-something years, we’ve always had quorum in order to pass legislation. If you don’t have quorum, you either have to adjourn or you have to compel members to be there and get your quorum,” he said. “It’s typical of any legislative body. It was typical where I served under the House and Senate in Texas, and it’s required by the Constitution.”
Proxy voting allowed members of the House to vote without being physically present by having another lawmaker do so for them. The practice, which has been used by members of both parties, was established during the pandemic, but Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has moved to get rid of it.
“They were claiming the reason they weren’t there was because of COVID. They can claim that, but there’s nothing in the Constitution that gives that type of exception,” Paxton told McDowell and Duffy. “They made it up.”
The press release from Paxton’s office said the federal government “should be enjoined from implementing” the spending bill. Some members of Biden’s administration are also being sued, it said.
FOX Business reached out to the White House for comment.
John Karcher and Chris Pandolfo contributed to this report.
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