Sorry, Republican John Boehner Won't Be Your President Tonight

Obama and Biden are scheduled to both be out of the country at the same time briefly on Tuesday. But they'll still run the show no matter what.
More

obamabidenboehner.banner.jpg

Reuters

For a brief spell on Tuesday night, both President Obama and Vice President Biden are scheduled to be out of the country at the same time. Obama is set to leave this evening for a trip to Israel and the Middle East, and Biden will be returning shortly thereafter from his trip to Rome.

That's led to some chatter online and on Twitter about "President Boehner," as if the third-in-succession would suddenly have control of the government because the No. 1 and No. 2 were off American soil simultaneously. But that's not how things work -- Boehner would only take up the reins of government if Obama and Biden were both somehow simultaneously disabled from performing their duties.

"The fact remains that President Obama is president of the United States everywhere he goes. Vice President Biden is vice president of the United States everywhere that he goes," White House spokesman Joshua Earnest told reporters at a briefing Friday. "There's no reason that that should in any way impact the day-to-day running of the country," he added.

Boehner will be the highest-ranking U.S. government official on U.S. soil, unless flight plans change -- but he still won't be able to get anything done. Partisan gridlock is partisan gridlock, whether Obama is on Air Force One or in the White House.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Garance Franke-Ruta is a former senior editor covering national politics at The Atlantic.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

The Death of Film: After Hollywood Goes Digital, What Happens to Movies?

You'll never hear the whirring sound of a projector again.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

The Death of Film

You'll never hear the whirring sound of a projector again.

Video

How to Hunt With Poison Darts

A Borneo hunter explains one of his tribe's oldest customs: the art of the blowpipe

Video

A Delightful, Pixar-Inspired Cartoon

An action figure and his reluctant sidekick trek across a kitchen in search of treasure.

Video

I Am an Undocumented Immigrant

"I look like a typical young American."

Video

Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion

Writers

Up
Down

More in Politics

Just In