Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) announced today that he would not be attending Netanyahu’s speech before Congress. Leahy referred to the speech as an embarrassment to Israel and the Congress.
In a statement, Sen. Leahy said, “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. They have orchestrated a tawdry and high-handed stunt that has embarrassed not only Israel but the Congress itself. It has long been an unwritten rule and practice through the decades that when it comes to American foreign policy, we speak and act thoughtfully, with one voice when we can, with the national interests of the United States as our uppermost consideration, and with caution about the unintended consequences of unilateral actions like this. They have diminished that valuable precedent.”
Leahy and Bernie Sanders are the first two senators to announce that they would be skipping Netanyahu’s speech. Sen. Leahy has been in the Senate since 1975 and is the nation’s longest-serving senator. The boycott of Netanyahu’s speech is growing among congressional Democrats.
The speech is a scam, a farce, and a total waste of time. Sen. Bernie Sanders explained on CNN why it was wrong for Republicans to give a foreign leader a platform to rip the President Of The United States. Sen. Leahy was correct. Americans should speak with one voice when they can on foreign policy.
Republicans are projecting an image of disrespect and hatred for the sitting president to the entire world. Republicans are engaging in an unprecedented campaign to undermine President Obama. What John Boehner is doing is wrong. Netanyahu was wrong to accept the invitation to speak. The Netanyahu speech is a combination campaign stop/publicity stunt.
Real patriots are speaking out against the Netanyahu speech because servants of the people should not be actively working to undermine the nation’s Commander in Chief.