WASHINGTON—In what can be seen as the most indifferent response from any administration on the Armenian Genocide Resolution, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs Tuesday told reporters that President Obama has not made calls to Congressional leaders to halt the passage of the H. Res. 252, the current iteration of the Armenian Genocide bill pending in Congress.
When asked what the president’s reaction was to a recent letter from Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who expressed serious concern about the Genocide resolution, the impact of its passage on future relations with Turkey, or whether the President had called Speaker Nancy Pelosi to oppose the resolution, Gibbs, in his Tuesday briefing was indifferent, at best.
“Well, obviously our relationship — our bilateral relationship with Turkey is enormously important. I do not know that the President — I do not believe that the President has made any calls specifically on this, and I think his views on this are known,” said Gibbs in response to the inquiry.
Meanwhile on Capitol Hill, hopes that the resolution would be placed to a vote on Tuesday faded, but the House leadership indicated that the House will be in session on Wednesday, as calls to Pelosi and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer continued to pour in from Armenian-Americans in the thousands.
Also on Tuesday, a Dear Colleague Letter signed by members of the Armenian-American Caucus Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Ed Royce (R-Calif.), Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) and Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), urged fellow House members to vote for the Armenian Genocide Resolution.
On the other hand, four members of the Congressional Caucus on Turkey, were joined by one-time Genocide resolution supporter, Massachusetts Democrat Bill Dellahunt to oppose the resolution, citing the classic anti-Genocide talking points of US interests in Turkey and the Incirlik Airforce base.
Armenian-Americans continue to push for the passage of the resolution by this Congress and are urged to continue to call Pelosi’s and Hoyer’s offices to urge the leaders to place the bill for a vote Wednesday when the House convenes to hear other important issues on its agenda.