Democrats back slap at Obama on Israel

May 25, 2011 at 8:33 AM
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WASHINGTON, May 25 (UPI) -- Democrats will support a Senate resolution countering President Barack Obama's call for basing Mideast peace on the 1967 borders, senators say.

Connecticut independent Joseph Lieberman and Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, are drafting a resolution that declares it "contrary to the U.S. policy and national security to have the borders of Israel return to the boundaries of 1949 or 1967," The Hill reports.

Obama's speech last Thursday calling for a Palestinian state in frontiers based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed land swaps enraged many Israel supporters even though it reflected past U.S. policy.

The White House is arranging a conference call with Jewish leaders to tame the uproar, The Washington Post reports. Republicans have seized on the issue.

"I wish that the president had not made the speech on Thursday, particularly not made it -- I gather -- without much consultation," said Lieberman. "I think it was a tactical mistake."

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., delivered a speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the main Israel lobby, implicitly breaking with Obama Monday.

"The place where negotiating will happen must be the negotiating table -- and nowhere else," he declared.

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