US Congress
US Congress Amos Ben Gershom/ GPO

US senators and congressmen responded on Wednesday to US President Donald Trump's recognition of the fact that Jerusalem is Israel's capital city.

US Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said, "I enthusiastically commend President Trump for today’s courageous and heroic decision. Roughly 120 years since a pioneer of the Zionist movement, Theodore Herzl, convened the first Zionist Congress in Basel, 50 years since the reunification of Jerusalem during the Six Day War, and nearly 70 years after the United States was the first country to give recognition to the modern State of Israel, the President of the United States has for the first time formally recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel."

"Today, December 6, 2017, the President also announced that he will move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This day will forever be etched in the history books as one of the great moments in history. The strongest and most prosperous country in the world has rectified what has been a historic injustice for far too long, recognizing the ancient and sacred city that has been the eternal capital of the Jewish people for over 3,000 years, and the capital of the one and only Jewish State since 1948.

"This announcement recognizes the reality that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, and sends a powerful message that rejects all those who wrongly seek to de-legitimize Israel through falsifying and erasing the profound ties that exist between the Jewish people and Jerusalem.

"I encourage countries around the world to now engage in their own moment of historical moral clarity, to follow America's lead in recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, immediately begin the process of moving their embassies to Jerusalem, and stand with the United States and Israel in voting against any future effort in international forums that attempts to deny historic truth."

Representative Peter Roskam (IL-06), co-chair of the House Republican Israel Caucus, said, "I applaud the decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to begin the process of moving the US Embassy to this holy city. Today’s announcement is the type of clear leadership that is so vital for the region."

"In the past year international organizations, including and especially at the United Nations, have passed numerous resolutions denying the three-thousand-year-old bond between the Jewish people and Jerusalem and have dedicated vast resources to discriminatorily and outrageously target Israeli and American companies operating in areas such as the Old City.

"Recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital repairs a longtime injustice and sends a clear signal to the world that despite their attempts to rewrite history and wage economic warfare against the Jewish State, the United States stands with Israel.

"I look forward to working with the Administration as it facilitates our embassy’s historic move and hope to soon visit our new Embassy in Jerusalem, Israel’s eternal and undivided capital."

"Jerusalem is the eternal capital of the State of Israel and the Jewish people," Ranking Member on the House Appropriations Committee Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY17) said. "I was proud to vote for the Jerusalem Embassy Act, which demonstrated Congress’ unified position that Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of Israel, and today’s announcement is consistent with existing US law."

"We must remain focused on the goal of two states for two peoples – the Jewish state of Israel and a Palestinian state – living side-by-side in peace, security, and mutual recognition. The Administration must focus its efforts on bringing both sides to the table, as only the parties themselves can agree to end this conflict."

However, not everyone supported Trump's decision.

Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) said, "I have long recognized Jerusalem as the historic capital of Israel, and have called for the eventual relocation of the United States Embassy to Jerusalem, the seat of the Israeli government.""While President Trump’s announcement earlier today rightly acknowledged the unique attachment of the Jewish people to Jerusalem, the timing and circumstances surrounding this decision are deeply worrying. This Administration has carelessly risked inflaming tensions in the region, as well as placing US diplomatic and military personnel in harm’s way. Like so much of the President’s foreign policy-making, this hasty announcement was a media ploy devoid of substance and without concern for American, Israeli, or international security interests.

"The focus of US energy in the region needs to be a return to the pursuit of a two state solution with direct, bilateral negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians. Of course, in any negotiated settlement, Jerusalem must remain the capital of the State of Israel. Today’s decision by President Trump, however, does not advance the prospect for peace in any way. Instead, it is likely to bring us further away from achieving a settlement that all sides can embrace."

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