Afterwards Boehner was scheduled to attend a reception on Wednesday night on behalf of Maria Cino, a former top House GOP aide who is seeking the Republican National Committee chairmanship. Boehner is backing Cino’s challenge to current RNC Chairman Michael Steele.
As a courtesy, Barack Obama extended an invitation to Boehner to travel on Air Force One to Arizona.
The Boehner staffers also insisted that, as speaker, Boehner’s place is on Capitol Hill, not in Tucson. They noted that Boehner had opened an hours-long tribute on the House floor Wednesday to Giffords and the other shooting victims and attended a bipartisan prayer service afterward. Because Air Force One left at 1 p.m., Boehner couldn’t have flown to Arizona and also attended the Capitol prayer service.
Far left Democratic political pundits and aides, not once missing the opportunity to try to use the tragic events that occurred in AZ last Saturday as political fodder, decided to try to use the optics of portraying Boehner as attending a party instead of the Memorial service in Tuscson.
I honestly don’t know what to say, when in a moment of national mourning the Speaker of the House chooses a Washington, D.C. fundraiser instead of attending the memorial in Tuscon, Arizona--- Taylor Marsh
I wonder what type of criticism Ms. Marsh would have had if Boehner has instead accepted the invitation to Tucson and not presided over the House's hours-long tribute on the House floor Wednesday to Giffords and the other shooting victims and if Boehner had also skipped the bipartisan prayer service afterward?
Boehner is now the Speaker of the House and it is his job to be there for the tribute scheduled in the House.
Even more disturbing is that House aides, not just political bloggers, are also trying to use the misleading optics:
“It is disrespectful for Speaker Boehner to skip joining the President’s and bipartisan congressional delegation to the Tucson Memorial so he could host a Washington D.C. cocktail party for RNC members,” said a Democratic leadership aide, speaking on the condition of anonymity.
Notice neither of those examples even mention the bipartisan prayer service, nor the tribute on the House floor in their pathetic attempts to politicize the Arizona tragedy and attempts to claim Boehner chose a party over a Memorial?
As I said yesterday, the tragedy in Arizona last Saturday has brought out the best and the worst in people and political pundits across the nation.
[Update] Kudos where they are due and those are due to left leaning TPM for reporting the actual events instead of the meme the far left has been pushing:
Boehner Didn't Really Snub Obama, Tucson Memorial
House Speaker John Boehner is catching a lot of flak for missing last night's memorial service in Tucson, reportedly declining an Air Force One invitation from President Obama in order to slap backs and clink glasses at an RNC event.
But a look at the timeline of events paints Boehner in a better light.