Total Pageviews

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Boehner Says Cantor Reprimanded Members Over Galilee Swim


Speaker John A. Boehner said on Monday that Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, the House majority leader, had done the right thing by scolding Republican House members who jumped into the Sea Of Galilee â€" one of them without any clothes on â€" during a trip to Israel.

On a trip billed as a foreign policy fact-finding mission last year, a large group of Republican members of Congress, and some of their staff and family members, decided to take a dip in the sea after a long day of tromping around the country. While most of the members remained clothed - or largely so - Representative Kevin Yoder of Kansas decided to disrobe entirely, according to a report by Politico.

More than 80 members of the House went on the trip, which was arranged by Mr. Cantor, as guests of the American Israel Education Foundation, a charity affiliated with the lobby group American Israel Public Affairs Committee. It was believed to be the largest number of members of Congress to make the trip during a single recess, according to the organizers.

The swimming incident appears to have attracted a passing interest from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which Democrats leaped on Monday. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee released a statement saying the episode “looks more like a scene out of Animal House than a delegation of Members of Congress representing America in Israel.”

A spokesman for Mr. Cantor, Douglas Heye, said that “Twelve months ago, the congressman dealt with this immediately and effectively to ensure such activities would not take place in the future.” Kevin Smith, a spokesman for Mr. Boehner, said: “The majority leader handled the s ituation swiftly and appropriately.”