Our Washington Bureau reporter Jack Torry talked with Sen. Sherrod Brown today who said he “likely” would attend a speech next month by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu before a joint session of Congress, breaking with some Democrats who plan to boycott the address.
“I likely will be there,” Brown, D-Ohio said, adding that the Senate has yet to advise lawmakers of the time of the speech.
In a conference call with Ohio reporters, Brown, D-Ohio, said he was unhappy with House Speaker John Boehner’s decision to invite Netanyahu without first clearing the speech with the White House. Netanyahu has been a critic of President Barack Obama’s efforts to reach a diplomatic settlement with Iran that would limit Iran’s ability to build a nuclear weapon.
“The unwritten rule around here is you don’t invite foreign leaders (to speak to Congress) close to election dates,” Brown said, referring to the Israeli elections next month. “Bad idea. But I have respect for that country and government and for that matter the prime minister,” although Brown said he does not always agree with Netanyahu.