Soon after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accepted House Speaker John Boehner’s invitation to address a joint session of Congress, President Obama made it clear he would not be in attendance because it would violate “protocol.” The White House soon after announced that Vice President Joe Biden would be traveling abroad that day, without elaborating on where or why.
The Associated Press today has published a piece on the “grudge match” between Netanyahu and the White House, and the details aren’t pretty.
Administration officials have discarded the idea of President Barack Obama himself giving an Iran-related address to rebut the two speeches Netanyahu is to deliver during his early March visit. But other options remain on the table.
Among them: a presidential interview with a prominent journalist known for coverage of the rift between Obama and Netanyahu, multiple Sunday show television appearances by senior national security aides and a pointed snub of America’s leading pro-Israel lobby, which is holding its annual meeting while Netanyahu is in Washington, according to the officials.
… the White House is now doubling down on a cold-shoulder strategy, including dispatching Cabinet members out of the country and sending a lower-ranking official than normal to represent the administration at the annual policy conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the officials said.
The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review’s Salena Zito has had enough of the pettiness.
Coequal? Quite a few have accused Boehner of treason for conspiring with a foreign leader behind the president’s back.