Fingers are already being pointed at Speaker of the House John Boehner for the potential defeat of Netanyahu in Israel. Some argue that Boehner’s partisan handling of the Netanyahu invitation created an unnecessary distraction for the Israeli Prime Minister.
But some worry that Netanyahu – with an assist from his host, House Speaker John Boehner – may have overplayed his hand and is now paying the price in Israel.
“It may be the case, purely in campaign terms, that the speech demanded so much of the prime minister’s time and attention that it left his domestic flank unguarded and enabled weeks of relentless attacks from his rivals,” says Noah Pollak, executive director of the conservative Emergency Committee for Israel.
“The speech showcased Netanyahu’s gravitas as a world leader – but it also may have been a source of distraction during a critical time in the race,” Pollak added.
Netanyahu’s Washington critics put it more bluntly. “The numbers speak for themselves,” said Jeremy Ben-Ami, executive director of the left-leaning J Street.
“He has three fewer seats in the polls headed into Election Day than he did when he got on the plane to come here.”
The main reason that Netanyahu is facing the prospect of defeat is his adherence to conservative trickle down economics. Trickle down is another Republican export of their own failure, but it can be argued that Speaker Boehner at least deserves an assist if Netanyahu gets defeated. Boehner could have easily avoided the controversy over the Netanyahu speech by following the protocol of notifying President Obama of the invitation.
Instead, Boehner and Netanyahu tried to stage a mutually beneficial partisan stunt. Boehner wanted to stop the president’s growing momentum while asserting the power of the new Republican congressional majority. Netanyahu used the U.S. Congress as a platform to deliver a campaign commercial about Israeli security.
Both gambits failed.
Netanyahu’s speech was so quickly forgotten that 47 Republican Senators pulled their treasonous letter to Iran stunt. Meanwhile, Netanyahu’s decision to emphasize security over the economy has caused him to lose ground with Israeli voters.
Speaker Boehner didn’t force Netanyahu to hop on a plane and come to United States, but the Republican’s grave political miscalculation created an international incident that pulled Netanyahu further away from the voters that he desperately needed.
Netanyahu listened to his Republican friends who ended up being wrong about everything. Obama hate has yet to win a national election, and the Republican record of failure could go global by leading Netanyahu to defeat.