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Obama vs. Boehner speech spat: Another sign of presidential disrespect?

For the first time, Congress refused a president's request to speak before a joint session. Some Dems see this as part of a pattern of disrespect toward Obama.

President Barack Obama meeting with House Speaker John Boehner (R) of Ohio at the White House in July over the debt ceiling negotiations.

Carolyn Kaster/AP/File

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The spat between the White House and House Speaker John Boehner is now settled: the President will address a joint session of Congress on Sept. 8, jousting with opening night of the NFL season instead of the previously-scheduled Republican presidential debate the night prior.

On one level, the tiff is just another example of the kind of Washington bickering that has become standard fare of late. But there’s one aspect of this story that may have legs — if it provides the president’s supporters with yet another piece of evidence that he is not being treated with the deference due (and typically given) the President of the United States. (The president’s request to appear before a joint session of Congress on Sept. 7 was turned down for what may have been the first time in history.)

Last month, the Progressive National Baptist Convention - a religious denomination that began in support of Martin Luther King Jr’s civil rights agenda - issued a resolution decrying the “disrespect” President Obama has encountered since taking office.


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