WASHINGTON – The top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee is attempting to strike at the heart of presidential signing statements.
Legislation proposed by Sen. Arlen Specter — similar to the Presidential Signing Statements Act of 2006, which Specter also introduced — instructs courts to actually ignore a presidential statement when interpreting an Act of Congress.
"Presidential signing statements can render the legislative process a virtual nullity, making it completely unpredictable how certain laws will be enforced," Specter said. "This legislation reinforces the system of checks and balances and separation of powers set out in our Constitution."
A notable line reads that the bill "seeks to curtail the President from using a signing statement to rewrite the words of a statute or using a signing statement to selectively nullify provisions he does not like."
Another key segment of the bill reads:
"The bill seeks to protect the constitutional system of checks and balances by, first, preventing the President from issuing a signing statement that alters the meaning of a statute by instructing the courts not to rely on signing statements in interpreting an act; and second, granting Congress the power to participate in any case where the construction or constitutionality of an act of Congress is in question and a signing statement was issued when the act was signed."
FOX News' Trish Turner contributed to this report.