John Boehner may be a traitor.
On Wednesday, the Speaker of the House confirmed that he had invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to come speak to Congress, “on the grave threats radical Islam and Iran pose to our security and way of life.”
The announcement just so happens to come as Republicans in Congress are pushing for new sanctions against Iran, which threaten current diplomatic negotiations with that country.
As of now, Netanyahu is expected to speak to a joint session of Congress in March, while he’s in the US for the annual AIPAC conference.
So, why is Boehner’s invitation to Netanyahu such a big deal?
First off, it’s a huge violation of protocol and massively disrespectful to President Obama and the authority of the executive branch.
It is completely unprecedented for the Speaker of the House, or any member of Congress, to invite a foreign leader to come to the US and speak to Congress without getting authorization and/or cooperation from the White House.
As Guy Ziv, a professor at American University who has studied US-Israeli relations told TPM, “It’s unprecedented. It’s hitting below the belt. It’s taking partisanship to a whole new level.”
By inviting Netanyahu to speak to Congress without the authority of the executive branch, Speaker Boehner is badly blurring the lines of national sovereignty, and again massively disrespecting typical protocol.
But, more importantly, he may be in violation of a number of laws, which may make him a traitor.
So, let’s take a look at a few legal possibilities where the Speaker’s actions may be considered criminal.
First, you could make a case that by inviting Netanyahu to speak to Congress without authority from the executive branch, Speaker Boehner is committing an act of sedition.
Sedition is defined as conduct or speech inciting people to rebel against the authority of a state or monarch.
However, it would be hard to prove that by inviting Netanyahu to speak to Congress, Boehner is trying to incite Americans to rebel against our nation; he’s just using a foreign leader to lobby for his own legislation.
This is why a better case for Boehner’s criminal conduct can be made under the Logan Act.