Former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee will take on the policies of U.S. President Barack Obama when he appears in eastern Jerusalem Monday to begin a three-day tour of Israel. Israel National News, Israel National Radio and INN TV will cover the opening event at the Shepherd’s Hotel, the Jewish-owned property whose renovation President Obama has tried to force Israel to block in order to prevent Jewish residents from moving in.
Nicknamed ‘Huckabee the Maccabee’ in name of the Jewish warriors who fought Greek invaders nearly 2,000 years ago, the former Arkansas governor will attend a gala dinner at the hotel, along with more than 100 guests.
Huckabee also will visit other Jewish neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem, the Jewish areas of the Judean holy city of Hevron and the Jerusalem suburb of Maaleh Adumim, located east of the capital. President Obama has refused to fulfill a promise by former President George W. Bush that Maaleh Adumim and other major Jewish populations centers in Judea and Samaria will remain under Israeli sovereignty if a new Palestinian Authority state is created.
The national religious Ateret Kohanim Yeshiva is sponsoring Huckabee's trip.
Likud Knesset Member Danny Danon, who will accompany Huckabee, said on Sunday that the visit is a sharp message protesting President Obama’s policy against construction for Jews in the area.
MK Danon also said that Obama's failure to bring the Palestinian Authority back to the negotiating table is in line with his failure on the domestic front, where the president’s health care plan is in deep trouble.
The leftist Peace Now organization plans to stage a protest when Huckabee visits eastern Jerusalem. Its American branch and the relatively new anti-nationalist J Street lobby have become highly influential in the White House since President Obama was elected.
The pro-Zionist Im Tirtzu group will face Peace Now outside the hotel when it supports Huckabee's backing for a united Jerusalem.