Boehner Invites Israeli PM to Address Congress on 'Grave Threats of Radical Islam'

By Susan Jones | January 21, 2015 | 11:44am EST

This May 24, 2011 file photo shows Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with House Speaker John Boehner on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP File Photo))

( - House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced on Wednesday that he is inviting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address a joint session of Congress "on the grave threats of radical Islam and the threat that Iran poses, to not only the Middle East but frankly to the world."

Obama noted that America and Israel "have always stood together -- we have a shared cause, we have common ideals, and now we must rise to that moment once again."

Boehner said President Obama -- who has a strained relationship with Netanyahu -- "papered over" some serious international threats in his State of the Union speech Tuesday night.

Among other things, Obama threatened to veto legislation imposing new sanctions on Iran if the Republican-led Congress sends him such a bill. "Now is the time for a diplomatic solution," the president insisted, even though repeated attempts at diplomacy have produced no clear results.

As for radical Islam, Obama never used the term, nor did he mention ISIS/ISIL by name.

"It's true, different al Qaeda affiliates and extremist groups have emerged -- from the Arabian Peninsula to Africa," Obama said. "The threat these groups pose is evolving.  But to meet this threat, we don’t need to send tens of thousands of our sons and daughters abroad or occupy other nations."

But according to Boehner on Wednesday, "There needs to be a more serious conversation in America about how serious the threat is from radical Islamic jihadists and the threat posed by Iran." Boehner said he expects to have congressional hearings on Iran sanctions legislation at a future date.

Boehner also said he expects Obama to send Congress an authorization for the use of military force in Iraq and Syria: "I expect that we will have hearings on that and that we will in fact have a debate and a vote on it -- timing yet to be determined."

On domestic priorities, "We'd love to do tax reform," Boehner said. "But you heard the president last night call for raising taxes again. Now if he wants to raise taxes, it's going to make it very difficult for us to come to some agreement on how we're going to reform our broken tax code."

Boehner said President Obama, in his State of the Union address, offered "more taxes, more government, more of the same approach that has failed the middle class for decades." Boehner called them the wrong policies and the wrong priorities.

"There's a better way. We need to fix our broken tax code; balance our budget, replace the broken health care law with solutions that lower costs and protect jobs.
The veto threats and fanstasyland proposals from the White House will not distrct the people's House from the people's priorities."

Boehner said another priority is protecting the United States and its allies overseas.

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