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Thread: Why John Boehner Won't Cancel the State of the Union Address

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    Senior Member HAPPY2BME's Avatar
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    Why John Boehner Won't Cancel the State of the Union Address

    Why John Boehner Won't Cancel the State of the Union Address

    The speaker rejected a call from conservatives to ban President Obama from addressing Congress as retribution for his unilateral immigration action.

    The Atlantic
    Russell Berman Dec 4 2014, 12:25 PM E


    Charles Dharapak/AP

    Of all the ideas Republicans floated for rebuking President Obama over his decision to circumvent Congress on immigration, perhaps the most intriguing was a call for Speaker John Boehner to bar him from delivering his annual State of the Union address in the Capitol.

    “The more the president talks about his ideas, the more unpopular he becomes."The speaker rejected that proposal on Thursday, but not out of respect for Obama or for the august office of the presidency. Quite the opposite, in fact. “The more the president talks about his ideas, the more unpopular he becomes." Boehner said with a smirk during a Capitol press conference. "Why would I want to deprive him of that opportunity?"

    It is Boehner's decision to make because, as fans of The West Wing know well, the speaker of the House by tradition extends a formal invitation for the president to address a joint session of Congress. Until Woodrow Wilson, presidents typically delivered their State of the Union messages only in writing, and a refusal by the House to invite the president would have been unprecedented. Boehner has always accommodated Obama's requests to address lawmakers in the House chamber, but the two did haggle over the date and time of a speech he delivered in September 2013 to present a new jobs plan that House Republicans soon blocked.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/...ddress/383430/
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  2. #2
    Senior Member HAPPY2BME's Avatar
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    Conservatives: Don't Let Obama Give State of the Union Address

    Nov 26, 2014 5:47 PM EST
    Not all conservatives agree that the move makes political sense.

    A series of political commenters, led by the editor of the National Review, have a new idea for Speaker John Boehner: refuse to invite President Obama from the State of the Union address.

    The thinking behind this proposal is that it would aptly demonstrate the level of GOP discontentment with the president, in case he doesn’t already know. Rich Lowry, the editor of the National Review, told The New York Times Tuesday night that if he were John Boehner “I’d say to the president: ‘Send us your State of the Union in writing. You’re not welcome in our chamber.’”

    Last week, the conservative website Breitbart suggested suggested Boehner do the same “so that the elected representatives of the people do not have to listen to, or applaud, a man who is violating his oath of office and governing as a tyrant.” Meanwhile, unnamed congressional Republicans are privately considering yanking the State of the Union welcome mat, according to Politico.

    “I don’t think anyone is under the impression that a State of the Union ... fundamentally changes the political playing field.”
    Dan Holler, communications director for Heritage Action

    While the plan legally checks out—the Constitution simply requires that “from time to time” the president let Congress know what’s going on—the optics would be problematic. “I know many see this as a great idea, but I don’t get it,” Noah Rothman at the conservative Hot Air tweeted. “Look petty, invite bad press, accomplish... What exactly?”
    Major conservative groups likely aren't impressed either. Heritage Action—which is pushing Congress to send Obama an appropriations bill defunding the order, even though he'd likely veto said bill—is, at best, indifferent to the idea.

    “Rolling back the policy is the important focus and everything else may well be good as long as it doesn’t distract from the actual hard work of rolling back what he did,” Dan Holler, the communications director for Heritage Action, told Bloomberg Politics.

    “Where I do think it would be harmful for the Republican party is if they allow that to be their only response,” he added.

    To be clear, this isn’t something Speaker john Boehner has endorsed, or even publicly talked about. Instead, it reads like another doomed political tactic—like impeachment or a government shutdown—that he’ll likely ignore. That may not be so be easy, however.

    “Republicans broadly and conservatives specifically are looking for a way to register opposition to what the president did last week in terms of executive action on immigration,” Holler said. “And to the extent that [refusing to invite Obama] falls into that bucket I suspect we’ll hear a lot about it.”

    State of the Union viewership has fallen throughout Obama’s presidency—only 33.3 million people watched his 2013 address, the lowest audience for the address since Bill Clinton’s in 2000.

    “I don’t think anyone is under the impression that a State of the Union ... fundamentally changes the political playing field,” Holler said.

    Given that the major networks declined to air the immigration announcement, Obama might get more attention if he was snubbed.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/a...-union-address
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