Boehner invites Ukrainian president to address Congress

Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerCannabis company says CBS refused to run its Super Bowl ad advocating for medical marijuana Breaking the impasse on shutdown, border security McCarthy, allies retaliate against Freedom Caucus leader MORE (R-Ohio) said Wednesday that he has invited Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to address a joint meeting of Congress next week.

Members of both parties had called on the Speaker to bestow the honor on Poroshenko, so lawmakers could show their support for Ukraine amid its violent conflict with Russia.

“Having President Poroshenko address Congress is another signal of our steadfast commitment to the aspirations of his people,” Boehner said in a statement. “It will be an honor and a privilege to welcome him to the United States Capitol.”

Boehner has invited him to address Congress on Thursday, Sept. 18. Poroshenko was already scheduled to be in Washington next week for a meeting with President Obama. 

Poroshenko, who took over in June, is the fifth president of Ukraine. He will be the second to address the U.S. Congress; President Viktor Yushchenko addressed a joint meeting of the House and Senate in 2005.

Leaders of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee wrote to Boehner earlier this week asking him to extend the invitation to Poroshenko. A bipartisan group of House lawmakers sent Boehner a similar letter Wednesday.