WASHINGTON (AP) — The leader of the U.S. House of Representatives, Speaker John Boehner, is heading to Israel as already strained relations between the White House and newly re-elected Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hit a new low this week.
On the surface, the Republican leader’s announcement Friday that he’ll visit Israel looks like a jab at the White House.
But a congressional aide insisted that Boehner’s trip — during the two-week congressional recess that begins March 30 — was planned before new rifts developed over Netanyahu’s address to Congress and the prime minister’s remarks this week about the peace process. The aide spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to publicly disclose details of the trip.
President Barack Obama bristled when Boehner invited Netanyahu to address U.S. lawmakers earlier this month about his fears that an emerging nuclear agreement would pave Iran’s path to nuclear weapons.
Relations took another hit Monday when Netanyahu made hard-line statements against the establishment of a Palestinian state…