Durbin: House leader told Obama ‘I cannot even stand to look at you’

A top Senate Democrat said that a leading House Republican told President Obama that they could not ‘even stand to look at you’ during negotiations over the government shutdown.

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said in a Facebook post that the alleged confrontation happened during a meeting between Republicans and the president.

{mosads}”Many Republicans searching for something to say in defense of the disastrous shutdown strategy will say President Obama just doesn’t try hard enough to communicate with Republicans,” Durbin said. “But in a ‘negotiation’ meeting with the president, one GOP House Leader told the president: ‘I cannot even stand to look at you.'”

“What are the chances of an honest conversation with someone who has just said something so disrespectful?” the Illinois Democrat added.

An aide to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said he had “no idea what [Durbin’s] talking about.”

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Durbin did not say when the alleged confrontation occurred, and whether the exchange happened in the period preceding or during the shutdown that shuttered government for 16 days earlier this month.

In October, the president met once with Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) as part of a powwow with congressional leadership. McConnell told CNBC shortly after that discussion was “cordial but unproductive.”

Later, the president invited the full House Republican caucus to meet at the White House, although a smaller leadership group handpicked by Boehner attended instead. In subsequent days, the full group of Republican senators traveled to the White House to meet with the president.

Tags Boehner Dick Durbin John Boehner Mitch McConnell
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