Two prominent Democrats announce boycott of upcoming Netanyahu speech

By JTA
February 6, 2015 04:00

 
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WASHINGTON — Two prominent Democrats say they will not attend Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress.

US Reps. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a hero of the civil rights movement, and G.K. Butterfield (R-NC) on Thursday slammed Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio), the speaker of the House of Representatives, for inviting Netanyahu to speak to Congress without consulting the White House or Democrats.

Jewish Democrats have protested the speech’s timing in private meetings with Ron Dermer, Israel’s ambassador to Washington, but have not said they will skip the speech.

Boehner has said he invited Netanyahu to speak in order to rebut President Barack Obama’s backing for nuclear talks underway between Iran and the major powers.

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