On the final day of his visit to the U.S., President Shimon Peres took part in a lighthearted event held in his honor at the residence of the Ambassador Michael Oren in Washington, DC.
The joke of the evening was that it was an event for those who didn't receive an invitation for the ceremony at the White House Wednesday evening, at which Peres received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from the U.S. President Barack Obama. White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew, Senator Joe Lieberman, and many other Jewish dignitaries, however, were present at both events.
Also in attendance were Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, several Congress members, including Ohio Senator Rob Portman, who rumored to be included on a short list of Mitt Romney’s possible running mates; Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Executive Vice President of American Friends of Chabad Lubavitch Rabbi Levi Shemtov, and many others.
Presented by Ambassador Michael Oren and introduced by the White House Chief of Staff Jacob Lew, Peres said his goal was to express his deepest respect and love for America.
However, it didn't go unnoticed that a large part of his speech focused on President Obama personally, whom he thanked for "doing more than he promised, contrary to what is being said, I don't know any request that was put before him that wasn't met with consideration," sending some guests home wondering whether Obama may indeed decide to grant clemency to convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard.