Overwhelming majority of House Democrats urge Trump to preserve ‘two states’

With 187 of 193 voting Democrats signing, the letter to Trump released Friday is a pointed reminder of how divided the parties remain on how to define pro-Israel.

By RON KAMPEAS/JTA
March 25, 2017 07:32
2 minute read.
Netanyahu Congress

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warns of the dangers of an impending nuclear deal with Iran as he addresses a joint meeting of Congress in Washington, March 3. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

The overwhelming majority of Democrats in the US House of Representatives urged President Donald Trump to reaffirm the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as U.S. policy.

With 187 of 193 voting Democrats signing, the letter to Trump released Friday is a pointed reminder of how divided the parties remain on how to define pro-Israel. It comes on the eve of an American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference that the lobby had hoped would be a signal of bipartisan support for Israel.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


J Street, the liberal Jewish Middle East policy group, lobbied for the letter, initiated by Reps. David Price, D-N.C. and Gerry Connolly, D-Va.

“It is our belief that a one-state outcome risks destroying Israel’s Jewish and democratic character, denies the Palestinians fulfillment of their legitimate aspirations, and would leave both Israelis and Palestinians embroiled in an endless and intractable conflict for generations to come,” said the letter, signed by 191 members.

AIPAC, which continues to back the two-state solution, did not have a position on the letter.

And while AIPAC found issues ahead of its March 26-28 confab that would unite the parties – including new sanctions on Iran, countering the Israel boycott movement and supporting foreign assistance – there is nothing in the legislative agenda its activists take to the Capitol on the final lobbying day of the conference that explicitly backs two states. The conference will nonetheless feature messaging that emphasizes two states, an AIPAC official told The Jerusalem Post.

In addition to the 187 Democrats, signers to the letter included two non-voting Democrats and two Republicans. All but one of the 21 Jewish Democrats in the House – Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey – signed the letter.



Republicans last year withdrew explicit backing for two states from the party’s platform. In February, President Donald Trump appeared to back away from a two-state solution,  which was supported by predecessors over the previous 15 years.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, leading the most hawkish Cabinet in the country’s history, is increasingly a lone voice in his government backing the outcome. He is under pressure from Cabinet ministers to his right to abandon two states and annex West Bank territory to Israel.
Trump edges away from two-state solution (credit: REUTERS)

AIPAC officials, if asked, will affirm the lobby’s commitment to the two-state outcome. Other centrist pro-Israel groups, including the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League, have taken a more robust posture defending two states, alarmed at retreats from the policy among Republicans and in Israel.

Related Content

Sydney, Australia.
August 17, 2018
Australian lawmaker calls for ‘final solution’ to Muslim immigration

By JTA