Netanyahu ‘Determined’ To Speak Before Congress About Iran
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated his determination to speak before Congress about Iran in a tweet Tuesday, despite opposition from the White House and some congressional Democrats.
“I’m determined to speak before Congress to stop Iran,” he tweeted in English Tuesday morning. “RETWEET if I have your support.”
A photo of Netanyahu attached to the tweet reads: “A dangerous agreement with Iran is taking shape in Munich which would risk Israel’s existence. Therefore, I’m determined to travel to Washington and present Israel’s position before Congress and the American people.”
Netanyahu is scheduled to address a joint session of Congress in March, weeks before he faces a tough re-election, and in the midst of Obama’s ongoing and delicate negotiations with Iran over nuclear weapons.
White House officials were “flabbergasted” when Boehner announced the invitation without advance warning, almost immediately following Obama’s announcement that he would veto any new sanctions on Iran.
Obama wants more time to negotiate in order to exhaust every diplomatic option, and congressional Democrats have voiced concern the speech could undermine his work. He is not planning to meet with Netanyahu during his visit.
But Boehner said last week he does not regret the invitation. “It was a very good idea, and there’s a message that the American people need to hear,” he said. “And I think he’s the perfect person to deliver.”
A number of Democrats have said they will not attend Netanyahu’s speech, including Vice President Joe Biden, and Sens. Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy.
“The unfortunate way that House leaders have unilaterally arranged this, and then heavily politicized it, has demolished the potential constructive value of this Joint Meeting,” Leahy said in a statement Tuesday. “[House leaders] have orchestrated a tawdry and high-handed stunt that has embarrassed not only Israel but the Congress itself.”
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