It’s unclear how many other Democrats will ultimately choose to protest the speech by refusing to go.
A growing number of top Democrats plan to skip next month’s Capitol Hill speech by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Reps. James Clyburn (S.C.), the third-ranking House Democrat, and Raúl Grijalva (Ariz.), chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), are just the latest lawmakers to indicate they won’t attend the March 3 address before a rare joint session of Congress.
The Democrats join other leading Capitol Hill liberals – including Reps. John Lewis (D-Ga.), the civil rights hero, and G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.), head of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) – in protesting the speech by vowing to steer clear of it.
And the White House re-entered the fray on Friday, announcing that Vice President Biden will also miss the speech as a result of travel abroad.
The uproar surrounding the address has taken on a life its own; the speech is scheduled to come near the end of delicate negotiations between the Obama administration and Iran over the future of the Iranian nuclear program.