“Washington, D.C. – House Speaker John Boehner announced Thursday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is scheduled to address Congress on March 3rd, although President Obama does not plan to meet with him.
“The House speaker had invited Netanyahu to speak to lawmakers about the threat from Iran. The announcement caught the president off-guard, as the invitation was not cleared first with the Obama administration; such invitations are typically coordinated with the State Department and White House.
“The White House said Obama would not meet with him, when asked Thursday about the visit, citing the country’s upcoming elections. Spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan said that in keeping with “long-standing practice and principle,” the president does not meet with heads of state or candidates in close proximity to their elections.
“Meanwhile, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said it was inappropriate for Boehner to invite Netanyahu to address Congress in the shadow of that election and give the appearance of endorsing the Prime Minister.
“Pelosi said: “if that’s the purpose of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s visit two weeks before his own election, right in the midst of our negotiations, I just don’t think it’s appropriate and helpful.”
“But Boehner cast the invitation as part of Congress’ effort to stay tough on Iran, as the Obama administration forges a possible nuclear deal with the country. On Wednesday, Boehner denied any suggestion he was “poking [the White House] in the eye,” though Josh Earnest, the White House Press Secretary, noted the invitation was a breach in protocol.
In an interview with Newslo, Boehner seemed somewhat surprised when asked about his party’s relationship with the Israeli Prime Minister. However, he quickly gave up trying to deny the obvious and spilled his guts.
“To be honest, I didn’t think it would remain a secret this long. But, it was bound to set-off some alarms sooner or later. So, yes – the GOP does have a very intimate relationship with Netanyahu, but not for the reasons everyone suspects; we’ve been trying to persuade him to become the party’s presidential candidate in the 2016 elections, and I’m happy to say we’ve finally succeeded. All that’s left is for us to make it official, which is what is going to happen on the 3rd of March, during his visit to Washington,” Boehner confessed. As for the long-term consequences of such a bombshell on the US political scene, they’re bound to be plentiful, to say the least.
Judging by major polls, Netanyahu is still the preferred candidate of 24% of polled voters. According to some of them, his “relentlesness” and “solid integrity” are the qualities that make him a desirable candidate for the position of President of the United States.