House Speaker John Boehner said Sunday that he had asked Israeli Ambassador to Washington Ron Dermer not to inform the Obama administration about their contact over Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Congress speech so as to avoid "interference."
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"I wanted to make sure there is no interference," Boehner told Fox News' Sunday morning program. "There is no secret here about the animosity that this White House has for Netanyahu and I didn’t want them getting in the way and quashing what I thought was a real opportunity,” Boehner continued.
Boehner's remarks contradict the earlier claim by him and his staff that he gave the White House sufficient warning about the Netanyahu invite – when in reality they updated the administration an hour before announcing it to the press. In other words, Boehner has admitted to keeping the White House in the dark about his contact with Dermer.
Despite the harsh criticism about the Netanyahu speech, scheduled for March 3, two weeks ahead of Israeli elections, Boehner said it is important for Netanyahu to speak to Congress about the Iranian nuclear threat.
“There’s a serious threat facing the world," he told Fox News. "And I believe Prime Minister Netanyahu is the perfect person to deliver the message of how serious this threat is.”