(Puff Ho): CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A rare unscripted moment at the Democratic National Convention here Wednesday resulted in an embarrassing moment for the party that is certain to be used in Republican television ads over the next two months.
Increasingly, the Democ-rats are being forced to reveal their true face to the American people, and the folks are not taking kindly to what they are seeing. The party of the enemy, the enemy within.
"Dissent as Dems put God, Jerusalem back in platform" (AFP)
CHARLOTTE, North Carolina — Democratic big-wigs faced an embarrassing revolt Wednesday as they put references to God and Jerusalem's status back in the November election platform despite strong opposition from members.
Amid chaotic scenes, Democrats began the second day of their Charlotte, North Carolina convention, amending a platform they adopted just 24 hours earlier
The party had faced a tidal wave of criticism from Republicans and some within the party after dropping pro-forma references to God and the party's support for Jerusalem being recognized as the capital of Israel.
Sensing the move may rile influential religious and Jewish voters, convention manager and Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, asked for approval of a revised document.
Proposing the motion, former Ohio governor Ted Strickland said "faith and belief in God is central to the American story" and "President Obama recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and our party's platform should as well."
But when a voice vote was called the "nays" appeared to match the "ayes."
"I -- I -- I guess, I'll do that one more time," said an obviously flustered Villaraigosa.
Despite the second attempt leading to a similar response, Villaraigosa declared: "In the opinion of that chair, two-thirds have voted in the affirmative. The motion is adopted, and the platform has been amended."
That sparked a chorus of boos from the floor.
Since 1992 Democrats have stated unequivocally that "Jerusalem is the capital of Israel."
Obama claims that he personally intervened to reinsert the Jerusalem as Israel's capital language; however, CNN spoke to the DNC yesterday, which stated that they were simply reflecting Obama's policies; looks like he just threw the DNC under the bus. Furthermore, the rest of the pro-Israel language from the '08 platform was still left out.
It’s troubling that the administration would remove pro-Israel language from the platform, but it’s also not particularly surprising. The Obama administration has repeatedly refused to name Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, much to the dismay of Israel supporters.
But that’s not even the most disturbing omission in the latest DNC platform. The 2008 document included this strong objection to the Palestinian “right of return,” which would destroy Israel’s identity as a Jewish state:
The creation of a Palestinian state through final status negotiations, together with an international compensation mechanism, should resolve the issue of Palestinian refugees by allowing them to settle there, rather than in Israel. All understand that it is unrealistic to expect the outcome of final status negotiations to be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949. Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel. The parties have agreed that Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations. It should remain an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths.
This language is nowhere to be found in the 2012 platform. While the RNC also removed references to the refugee issue in its platform this year, that’s actually an improvement from its vague 2008 stance, which called for the Israelis and Palestinians to settle the issue between themselves. The RNC platforms from 2008 and 2012 affirm Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
The DNC, in contrast, weakened its positions on both the refugee issue and Jerusalem since 2008. Why did they water it down? Was it to conform with Obama administration stances that are less supportive of Israel?
While the DNC 2012 platform omitted these critical statements, it also made some additions since 2008: Roughly 178 words touting President Obama as a great friend to Israel. Apparently the DNC had to remove the parts about Jerusalem and the Palestinian right of return to make room for the paragraph telling us what a pro-Israel stalwart Obama is.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu famously lectured Obama about the right of return in 2011, indicating their disagreement on the issue. But until now, it was assumed that the Obama administration at least held the standard position that the Palestinian refugee situation would be settled within the confines of a future Palestinian state. Is the Obama administration now indicating that the refugee issue will be up for debate during negotiations? If not, why was the language removed?