“The Obama Administration has followed the same policy towards Jerusalem that previous U.S. Administrations of both parties have done since 1967,” a DNC spokeswoman said of the change in platform language. “As the White House said several months ago, the status of Jerusalem is an issue that should be resolved in final status negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians – which we also said in the 2008 platform. We will continue to work with the parties to resolve this issue as part of a two state solution that secures the future of Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland of the Jewish people.”
Sadly the DNC statement is false and misleading. First of all the Obama policy is different from that of the Bush administration. The Bush administration recognized Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel, but delayed the moving of the embassy till the borders of Jerusalem were determined.
In 1995 Congress passed the Jerusalem Embassy Act endorsing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and requiring the US Embassy to move to Jerusalem. But Congress gave the executive branch an out, every six months the State Department/President can request and receive an automatic waiver. A waiver that President Bill Clinton issued to congress every six months as required.
President Bush continued the policy every six months, but in Bush’s case, he inserted into the legal jargon a sentence stating, “My Administration remains committed to beginning the process of moving our embassy to Jerusalem.” The phrase appeared in all 16 Bush waiver notifications. The Obama administration removed that phrase from their waiver requests.
The Democratic statement in defense of the platform omission says the President believes the status of Jerusalem should be a final status issue, the 2008 platform included that language:
Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel.The parties have agreed that Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations.
Even the statement released by the DNC tonight admits the original platform talked about final status negotiations. Therefore the question remains; if the old platform said the final status of Jerusalem was to be negotiated, and the President’s policy is the final status of Jerusalem is to be negotiated—why was the reference to Jerusalem being the capital of Israel removed from the 2012 DNC platform?
The Huffington Post ran a story quoting a DNC source saying the revised platform was approved by AIPAC. According to Ms Rubin that claim is also a lie:
A source close to AIPAC, who was not authorized to speak on the record, told me this evening, “AIPAC officials were not in the room while the platform was being drafted. AIPAC did not receive or review the Middle East part of the platform.” The source continued, “Israel is our most reliable ally. ‘Jerusalem is the capital of Israel’ was part of the AIPAC submission to the platform committee.” In other words, the sources talking to Huffington Post are lying, according to multiple sources….
….One pro-Israel Jewish leader not associated with AIPAC e-mails that the language was probably an attempt to sync up the platform with President Obama’s rhetoric and language. Recently, the administration caught flak for refusing to identify Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. To be consistent, the refusal to identify the capital of the Jewish state would have necessitated removing from the platform language that then-candidate Barack Obama used in 2008, explicitly stating that Israel’s capital is Jerusalem. The notion that pro-Israel groups who publicly and privately criticized the administration’s reticence and submitted language on the capital were pleased with the platform is preposterous.
That’s the second Israel lie the Democrats got caught spewing today, the other being DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s lie about Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren saying the GOP positions were dangerous for Israel.
The Democrats are in a bind. On one hand they are desperately trying to repair their relationship with the Jewish voters who feel alienated because of the President’s stance on Israel. Not that the GOP will receive a majority of that vote but a big shift from the 78% they received in 2008 to say 62-65% might be the difference in swing states such as Florida or Pennsylvania. On they are trying to appease the radical left part of the party which seeks to push the President’s positions even further away from what pro-Israel voters would like to see.
So they are left with this platform as a compromise, a truer reflection of the President’s policies which they need to lie about to maintain their huge Jewish electoral advantage in November.