President Obama calls Boehner and Biden his ‘favorite golf partners’

President Obama and Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) don’t agree on much, but their mutual love of golf brought the pair together Tuesday for a ceremony at the White House.

Obama hailed Boehner and Vice President Biden as “two of my favorite golf partners,” while conceding that “in each instance, they have to give me strokes.”

He also said of Boehner that while some Republicans knock the frequency with which he hits the links, golfing was “the only thing he doesn’t criticize me about.”

{mosads}Obama has played more than 170 rounds of golf during his presidency, and spoken about how he appreciates the time outside the White House bubble.

But while he may claim they’re among his favorites, Biden and Boehner are not among Obama’s most frequent golfing partners. The president last teed off with Boehner in 2011, during negotiations over a budget deal, and his most recent round with Biden appeared to be last August.

Tuesday’s ceremony included some of golf’s all-time greats including Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els and Fred Couples. Obama praised the golfers for their participation in the international match play tournament, which raises money for charity.

He also praised golfers’ individual charity efforts, singling out Woods for his foundation work. The president and Woods memorably played golf together in Florida last year, but the White House’s decision to exclude reporters drew a complaint form the White House Correspondents’ Association.

Obama also noted with some satisfaction that the U.S. team had prevailed over the international competition each year he served as a ceremonial captain.

“We hope our World Cup team takes a page out of their playbook,” Obama said, referring to Thursday’s pivotal soccer match against Germany. The U.S. team needs a win or tie to advance into the knockout round of the tournament.

Boehner did not speak at the event.

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