Tensions between congressional Republican and the White House have remained high since Boehner invited Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address Congress last month -- without first notifying the White House. Critics, who saw that invitation as a severe breach of protocol, have continued to accuse Boehner of attempting to undercut the administration's foreign policy.
Boehner's trip to the Middle East -- alongside a delegation of Republican lawmakers that includes Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell -- hasn't helped. Neither will Boehner's language, which mirrors language Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has used on the trail. (Cruz told an audience in New Hampshire just last month, for example, that "the world is on fire.")
Boehner also told Politico that he believes the White House isn't doing enough to manage growing challenges abroad.
“We’ve got some big, serious problems, and there’s no overarching strategy to deal with it,” he said. “... What bothers me is it looks like the administration is so hungry for a deal just to have a deal so they can say they have a deal … The rest of the world wants something real out of this.
The White House has thus far declined to comment on specific remarks made by Boehner or McConnell during their trip, but has called their visit “appropriate.”
“I didn’t know -- I haven’t seen any comments they’ve issued since they’ve been on the ground in Israel. I will say, we’ve said that lawmakers from both parties visit the state of Israel all the time and we think that’s entirely appropriate,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Eric Schultz told reporters Monday.
Boehner stressed Wednesday that the U.S.-Israeli partnership remains "rock solid."
“Here’s the essence of what I’ve learned on this trip: The problem is growing faster than what we and our allies are doing to try to stop it,” Boehner said.