Forward Thinking

Lukewarm Response to Anti-Palestinian Letter

By Nathan Guttman

Congressional efforts to shut down the Palestinian delegation office in Washington have garnered only tepid support.

A letter, co-authored by the outgoing and incoming leaders of the House Foreign Affairs Committee from both parties and calling on the President to close the PLO office in Washington, has closed on Friday with only 239 signatures.

The letter came in response to the United Nations November 29 vote recognizing Palestine as a non-member observer state, a status strongly opposed by Israel and by the United States.

While not a bad number for a congressional effort, this figure is on the lower end of support for AIPAC-backed initiative. Letters supported by the pro-Israel lobby in recent years easily got more than 300 signatures.

The party breakdown shows clearly more support for the measure by Republicans, with 172 co-signers. Only 67 Democrats signed on.

Why the chilly reception to the anti-Palestinian measure?

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