One of the more loudly trumpeted developments from former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's international trip has been his open embrace of the idea that the city of Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, a statement that marks him as one of the more pro-Israeli candidates in recent history.
So of course, no one should be surprised that the White House has immediately gone on record saying he's wrong, and that they do not believe Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, but that Jerusalem's status should be resolved via "negotiations." This is a far more honest approach than the equivocation that has been standard from White House Press Secretary Jay Carney. CNSNews reports:
In what marks a decisive difference in the presidential campaign, one day after Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney called Jerusalem the capital of Israel, the White House asserted that Romney’s position was different from that of the Obama administration.
“Our view is that that is a different position than this administration holds. It’s the view of this administration that the capital should be determined in final status negotiations between parties,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters Monday.
“I would remind you that that is the position that has been held by previous administrations both Democratic and Republican. So, if Mr. Romney disagrees with that position, he is also disagreeing with positions taken by previous presidents like Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan,” Earnest added.
Strong words. Also, clearly a strong about switch from the President, seeing as there is clear evidence that this was President Obama's position when he last ran for President:
It's quite a shift to go from "Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and it must remain undivided" to "the capital should be determined in final status negotiations between parties.” One must wonder what changed - that is, aside from the President's need to motivate his base.