Mitch McConnell
Mitch McConnellReuters

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told Axios in an interview after his recent trip to Jerusalem that the Israeli government’s judicial reform is an internal Israeli matter and the US should not intervene.

McConnell, who visited Israel last week as part of a Senate delegation of Republicans and met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Isaac Herzog, told Axios’ Barak Ravid that the issue of the Israeli government’s judicial plan hardly came up in the meetings in Jerusalem and stressed this was a domestic issue.

“I don't have an opinion I'm willing to express about it," he said in an interview this week.

"This is something the citizens of Israel are going to have to sort out for themselves without any American influence. … It isn’t any of my business to give Israelis advice about how to sort this out," he added.

McConnell’s view differs from that of the Biden administration and the Democrats, who have been vocal about their opposition to the judicial reform.

President Joe Biden also weighed in on the judicial reform, in a statement he sent to Thomas Friedman of The New York Times.

“The genius of American democracy and Israeli democracy is that they are both built on strong institutions, on checks and balances, on an independent judiciary,” Biden wrote.

“Building consensus for fundamental changes is really important to ensure that the people buy into them so they can be sustained,” the President added.

Vice President Kamala Harris later commented on the judicial reform as well, telling Politico, “As the president has said, an independent judiciary is foundational for a democracy. And I think that there is no question that we need to make sure that that is supported in terms of what we talk about [and] in terms of our values.”

US Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides, meanwhile, recently called on Israeli leaders to “pump the brakes” on the judicial reform.

In response, Diaspora Affairs Minister Amichai Chikli called on Nides to “put on the brakes yourself and mind your own business.”

This week, Nides took a swipe at Chikli and said, “An Israeli official that I don’t know said I should stay out of Israel’s business. I think most Israelis don’t want the US to stay out of Israel’s business.”