The Associated Press reported that the Obama administration passed out millions of taxpayer dollars to left-wing causes just hours before President Donald Trump was inaugurated. The larger portion of the money, $221 million worth, went to the Palestinian Authority despite being put on hold by members of Congress.
The AP said a State Department official and several congressional aides confirmed that Obama formally notified Congress of the payout on the Friday morning of the inauguration.
The official said former Secretary of State John Kerry had informed some lawmakers of the move shortly before he left the State Department for the last time Thursday. The aides said written notification dated Jan. 20 was sent to Congress just hours before Donald Trump took the oath of office.
Obama also released another $4 million for climate change programs and $1.25 million for U.N. organizations.
The funds released to the Palestinian Authority will likely be seen as a last stab at the state of Israel, especially after the United States abstained from vetoing United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334 that condemned Israeli settlements. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu responded forcefully when Obama's Secretary of State John Kerry gave a speech in support of the act many saw as a betrayal of one of our strongest Middle East allies.
Israel is set to have a much easier time with the incoming administration of Trump, who has supported moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, a controversial policy that would place pre-eminance on the Israeli claim to the holy city.