General Leave; Congressional Record Vol. 165, No. 195
(House of Representatives - December 06, 2019)

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                              {time}  0915

                             General Leave

  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members have 
5 legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and 
include extraneous material on H. Res. 326, currently under 
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentleman from New York?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, the measure we are considering today is something that 
ought to be straightforward. It is essentially a reiteration of our 
support for the consensus view that has prevailed for two decades on 
resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, a two-state solution.
  This measure emphasizes that presidents of both parties and Israeli 
Prime Ministers have supported reaching the two-state solution that 
establishes a Palestinian state living side by side in peace and 
security with Israel. President George W. Bush said clearly, ``My 
vision is two states living side by side in peace and security.'' And 
President Obama agreed that, ``There is little secret about where they 
must lead, two states for two peoples.'' Prime Minister Netanyahu has 
said, ``Israel remains fully committed to peace and the possibility of 
two states for two people.''
  There are reasons, Mr. Speaker, so many of us have supported this 
approach for so long. A two-state solution would go a long way to 
ensure Israel's survival as a secure Jewish and democratic state, and 
it would fulfill the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people 
for a state of their own.
  The resolution we are considering underscores that a two-state 
solution puts us on the path toward these outcomes. It makes clear that 
any proposal to achieve a just, stable, and lasting solution to this 
conflict should likewise endorse a two-state solution.
  This is what we have been talking about for decades, Mr. Speaker, 
here on the House floor and at international gatherings, across 
administrations of both parties and Congresses, and premierships and 
Knessets of every stripe. This isn't controversial. At least it 
shouldn't be. This is nothing radical. We all know two states won't 
spontaneously appear tomorrow. The parties have a lot of work ahead of 
them, but every day we seem farther away from the goal.
  Some of the reasons are plain as can be. Violence and terrorism 
continue to come in waves. Hamas has rained down hundreds of rockets at 
populations across Israel, and there seems to be no end in sight. 
Palestinian leaders have not embraced their role as peacemaker. How can 
Israel sit down with people who pay off terrorists?
  But no one said peace was easy. To paraphrase the late Israeli Prime 
Minister Yitzhak Rabin, ``You don't make peace with your friends. You 
make peace with your enemies.''
  I haven't lost hope, but the minute America abandons its leadership 
role in the two-state solution, that hope dwindles. We cannot get to 
the point where Israel's role as a Jewish and democratic state is at 
risk. So that is why we need to get back to what has rooted American 
policy toward the conflict for so long, what has guided our efforts.
  Now, let's look at the history, because a little bit of history is 
  Back in 1947, the U.N. Security Council came up with Resolution 181, 
which partitioned the land into what they called a Jewish state and an 
Arab state. The Jews accepted it. And the Palestinians, the Arabs, 
rejected it and tried to push Israel and the Jews into the sea. It 
didn't work.
  The war of independence happened. In 1948 Israel was declared a 
democracy and a nation state. And so we fast forward and we see what 
happened each time the Arab states rejected the right of the Jewish 
people to have a homeland on their land for many years.
  So when one side says, oh, we are being mistreated. I think they have 
to go back and look at how they reacted. Because, again, back in 1967, 
back in 1973, there was no so-called occupation, there was nothing that 
the Arabs object to today, and yet, they refused to make peace with 
Israel. So I think that we have to look at both sides and we have to 
say, you know, people who are protesting now and saying that there is 
no peace really should look at what their actions have been for these 
past years.
  Unfortunately, there has not been the leadership, in my opinion, in 
the Arab world to be able to make peace. That is why it is so important 
that this Congress do it. That is why it is so important that we put 
our heads together and try to say that constant war is not going to 
solve anything, but a two-state solution probably ultimately will.
  So that is why we need to get back to what has rooted American policy 
toward the conflict for so long, what has guided our efforts.
  Do you know what a one-state solution means? It means a state where 
Jews could become the minority in their own country. It means one 
Palestinian state with no determination for the Jewish people or for 
the Palestinians. Israel's right to exist as a state that is both 
Jewish and democratic is incompatible with a one-state solution, 
  I would caution all Members to bear in mind that before making 
charges in this debate about who supports Israel and who doesn't, about 
who is turning this issue into a political football, there is no Member 
of this body who is a stronger supporter than I am of the U.S.-Israel 
relationship, of Israel's right to exist and defend itself.
  That is why I support this legislation, because I want to see peace 
between Israelis and Palestinians. I want Israel to have a secure and 
prosperous future. And I want to see American leadership brought to 
bear on this issue.

[[Page H9300]]

  Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

  Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to H. Res. 326.
  I have great respect for the gentleman from New York (Mr. Engel), who 
has been a long-time champion of the U.S.-Israel relationship. And as I 
was listening to his opening remarks, there is a lot that he said that 
I strongly agreed with. And it kind of pained me realizing that he 
didn't write this actual resolution that is before us, because I know 
it would have been worded differently and it would have received 
  Unfortunately, many of the opening remarks which I strongly agreed 
with are deliberately not in this resolution. It is a great opening for 
another resolution, not this one.
  Last summer we came to the House floor and we almost unanimously 
passed a resolution to strongly oppose BDS. That resolution included a 
lot of what this resolution tries to do. It is a watered-down version 
of what we did last summer. When we woke up the next day, many Members 
in this House said, okay, now what are we going to do about it?
  S. 1 was a bill that passed at the beginning of this year in the 
Senate with strong bipartisan support with under 80 Senators voting for 
it. It has a companion bill, H.R. 336, by lead Republican   Michael 
McCaul of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. There is a discharge 
petition that has almost 200 signatures on it led by Congressman Brian 
Mast to bring S. 1-H.R. 336 to the floor.
  So we made a strong statement last summer, and we woke up the next 
day, and are motivated to do something about it. We can actually, right 
now, with this time that we are debating and with the vote that we are 
about to have, we can actually be passing a bill with teeth that would 
go to the President's desk and would be signed into law.
  And that is where our focus should have been. This resolution before 
us today is deeply flawed, it is highly partisan, it is ill-timed, and 
it is poorly crafted.
  In the last 2 years, Israel has been hit by over 2,600 rockets and 
mortars. In the past year alone, 1,500 of those rockets were fired from 
the Gaza Strip into Israel.
  Filing this resolution squarely into the category of worst timing 
possible, H. Res. 326 comes to the floor just 1 week after Israel was 
bombarded with over 450 rockets. In all of the pages of this 
resolution, guess where it mentions Palestinian terrorism? Nowhere.
  This resolution fails to not only recognize these latest attacks, but 
all of the persistent assaults on innocent Israelis by Palestinian 
  Guess what else this resolution fails to mention? It is silent on 
fundamental facts that shape the way Israel has dealt with a constant 
threat on its border, as the chair so eloquently observed when he 
referenced Hamas rockets raining into Israel and Palestinians paying 
off terrorists, and the need for a Jewish and democratic state. It 
makes no reference to Hamas firing rockets. It makes no reference to 
Palestinians paying off terrorists. It makes no reference to 
recognizing Israel as a Jewish state.
  During the March of Return, every single week protestors gather along 
the border of Israel in Gaza to throw Molotov cocktails and burning 
tires at IDF soldiers. Just this week, Hamas passed out leaflets 
calling on the public to join these protests in response to Israel 
defending itself against the Palestinian Islamic jihad. You won't find 
this in this resolution. Or that Hamas uses innocent women as human 
shields, that they call jihad an obligation, inciting violence. And 
that list goes on.
  And maybe worst of all, this resolution completely fails to mention 
that Israel has made repeated attempts to offer peace proposals to the 
Palestinian Authority. After the Camp David talks in 2000, Israel 
offered to withdraw from 90 percent of Judea and Samaria, parts of East 
Jerusalem and Gaza. That same year, though, the Palestinians started 
the Second Intifada, and more than 1,000 innocent Israeli civilians 
were killed in a Palestinian campaign of suicide bombings and 
  In 2008, Israel offered to withdraw from 93 percent of Judea and 
Samaria, but time and again, the Palestinian Authority rejected peace 
proposals while continuing to refuse to this day, both publicly and 
privately, to accept Israel as a Jewish state.
  In this vein, the Palestinian Authority continues to incite violence 
and financially rewards terrorism through its Pay for Slay program, 
which included the murder of an American, United States military 
academy graduate, Army veteran Taylor Force.
  Yet, House Democrats added language to this resolution at the last 
minute to support the Palestinians, despite the fact that the 
Palestinian Authority refuses to suspend this Pay for Slay program to 
this day.
  This resolution imposes a solution for Israel, stating specific 
Palestinian Authority demands and deliberately leaving out critical 
Israeli preconditions necessary to maintain security.
  If you are going to engage in naming specific preconditions like the 
way this resolution puts those preconditions on Israel, the Palestinian 
Authority demands, well then try to balance it all out, but this 
resolution doesn't even make any reference to Palestinian terrorism. It 
is silent about providing assurances for Israel's safety and security 
through a demilitarized zone, but that didn't stop the resolution's 
authors from including Palestinian demands of Israel.
  The timing of this vote is no coincidence either. This resolution, by 
the authors' own admission, is a clear rebuke to the Trump 
administration's recent reversal of the Obama administration's 
targeting of Israel with U.N. Security Council Resolution 2334. The 
timing is no coincidence.
  The resolution references President Obama's policy toward Israel 
after the November 2016 election, but does not mention the Trump 
administration's efforts. One of the worst lines in this resolution 
references support for ``the principles set forth by President Obama in 
December 2016.'' After the Obama administration abstained from U.N. 
Security Council Resolution 2334, the House, along with many of my 
Democratic colleagues here today, voted in favor of a resolution to 
forcefully condemn U.N. Security Council Resolution 2334.

  This resolution, H. Res. 326, is a reversal on that point, pointing 
to that December 2016 moment in time as if it was something that should 
be applauded. This resolution chooses to reference President Obama's 
policy while intentionally leaving out the Trump administration's 
policy, ensuring a partisan outcome to this resolution.
  The resolution doesn't mention the long list of victories that we 
have had in this administration to strengthen our support and security 
and stability of Israel, to strengthen the U.S.-Israel relationship, 
like moving our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, to signing the Taylor 
Force Act, and recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.
  This partisan resolution creates a totally unnecessary schism in what 
has otherwise been a longstanding history of strong, bipartisan support 
for the U.S.-Israel relationship, which included the resolution that 
passed last summer.
  There are other great bipartisan bills that support Israel and fight 
anti-Semitism at home. We should be spending our time debating and 
passing bills like S. 1 and H.R. 336 sponsored by   Michael McCaul, the 
Never Again Education Act or the Peace and Tolerance in Palestinian 
Education Act.

                              {time}  0930

  The House already passed, almost unanimously, that resolution, H. 
Res. 246, last summer that opposed BDS and supported peace between the 
Israelis and Palestinians. Now, we are bringing a watered-down, 
partisan, and weakened version of what has already passed in the House.
  House Democrats should bring bipartisan legislation forward with 
teeth that will support Israel and fight the BDS movement. But rather 
than move forward and build on our longstanding history of bipartisan 
support of the U.S.-Israeli alliance, House Democrats have decided to 
play partisan politics with what is a powder keg.
  Mr. Speaker, I urge all of my colleagues to vote ``no'' on this 
resolution, and I reserve the balance of my time.

[[Page H9301]]


  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the gentleman from 
California (Mr. Lowenthal), the author of this resolution.
  Mr. LOWENTHAL. Mr. Speaker, I rise to urge my colleagues to join me 
in voting to affirm a longstanding, bipartisan, and fundamental 
principle of American foreign policy. I believe we should pass this 
resolution today because it states facts which have been true for 
decades and which are true today.
  A two-state solution represents the only path to a just and lasting 
peace in the Middle East, and it is the only way to safeguard Israel as 
a secure Jewish and democratic state while also upholding the rights 
and the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people.
  We will never compromise on Israel's security, and we will not turn 
our backs on the Palestinian people's desire for dignity and justice.
  Some ask why Congress should speak out now or in this way. To them, I 
say this: When peace appears most remote, our voices become more 
critical, not less. The ongoing conflict can only inflict more 
suffering on innocent people on both sides.
  We cannot let the possibility of a just peace slip away, and we 
cannot accept any action that undermines a two-state solution.
  We must speak out against policies that could put peace out of reach: 
unilateral annexation, unilateral pushes for statehood, violence, or 
settlement expansion.
  Mr. Speaker, I wish to thank many of my colleagues who have worked 
tirelessly to bring this legislation to the floor, including 
Congresswoman Bass and Congressman Connolly, Congressman Price and 
Congresswoman Schakowsky, Chairman Engel, Congressman Pocan and 
Congresswoman Lee, Congressman Deutch and Congressman Gottheimer, the 
192 cosponsors who supported this important effort, and Leader Hoyer 
and Speaker Pelosi.
  Mr. Speaker, I also want to thank another one of my colleagues, 
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib. We spoke yesterday, and although she is 
not a supporter of H. Res. 326, I left our meeting feeling optimistic.
  If a Jewish American from Queens and a Palestinian American from 
Detroit, both proud Americans, can find common ground about the need 
for all people, regardless of whether they are Californians or 
Michiganians, regardless of whether they are Jewish or Muslim, Israeli 
or Palestinian, if we can find common ground to live in peace and 
security with the same rights to self-determination and dignity, that 
fills me with hope.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Kildee). The time of the gentleman has 
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield an additional 30 seconds to the 
  Mr. LOWENTHAL. Mr. Speaker, that fills me with hope.
  Mr. Speaker, this resolution affirms the principles that have guided 
our foreign policy under Democratic and Republican administrations. We 
know that a two-state solution is the only path to a just peace.
  Mr. Speaker, this is not a partisan bill. I urge my Republican 
colleagues to join me in voting to pass H. Res. 326.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the gentleman from Ohio 
(Mr. Chabot).
  Mr. CHABOT. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  As the senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and as a 
former chairman of the Middle East and South Asia Subcommittee, I rise 
today in opposition to H. Res. 326, legislation that I believe is 
biased against Israel.
  To understand this resolution, it must be taken in context. In July, 
this House overwhelmingly passed H. Res. 246, which condemned efforts 
to delegitimize Israel. It also reaffirmed our support for a two-state 
  A mere 5 months later, we are considering this redundant legislation 
when we should be talking about the National Defense Authorization Act, 
funding the government, prescription drug prices, the opioid epidemic, 
so many other things. Instead, House Democrats find it more important 
to rebuke the Trump administration because it took the position that 
Jewish settlements in the West Bank are not illegal.
  What is really happening here is this resolution is meant to paper 
over a deep division within the Democratic Party between responsible 
voices who understand the importance of our relationship with Israel, 
and many of those are here today speaking, and a campus radical left 
that pushes BDS, welcomes anti-Semitic attacks on Israel, and believes 
that Israel is the problem while the Palestinians are just helpless 
  Forceful, principled Democratic leadership would take seriously their 
responsibility to educate the public and clear up these misbegotten 
notions. Instead, they have opted to cover over this serious problem 
with their flawed legislation today. That is most unfortunate.
  Further, the resolution itself is fatally deficient in a number of 
ways. Again, context is critical. The resolution completely ignores the 
reason why the two-state solution has never gotten off the ground: 
venomous voices among the Palestinians don't want two states. They want 
one, a Palestinian state.
  The blame falls squarely on these pernicious forces. Just look at the 
recent round of rocket attacks from Gaza.
  That is why we shouldn't rule out other options by saying two states 
is the only possible solution, as this resolution does. It gives the 
Palestinians a vote over Israel's future, and we shouldn't let that 
  Additionally, by raising the issues of settlements and annexation 
without serious criticism of Palestinian terrorism and intransigence, 
which far outweighs anything that Israel has done, this resolution buys 
into the narrative of the campus left that Israel is the perpetrator 
and the Palestinians are just victims, an anti-Semitic narrative.
  Mr. Speaker, for these reasons, I oppose this resolution, and I urge 
my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to vote against it.
  Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman from New York (Mr. Zeldin) for his 
leadership on this.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, one point to clarify about this resolution, as the 
bill's author, my friend from Queens, we should say, even though he has 
a new district these days, talks about this not being a partisan 
resolution, this debate and this vote, the reality is this resolution 
is going to end up being, and is, the most partisan resolution that 
this House has ever taken up on Israel.
  Mr. Speaker, I look forward to an opportunity to work with the bill's 
author. I believe strongly in the need to strengthen the U.S.-Israel 
relationship. I also feel strongly in my opposition to this bill, as 
many of my colleagues do as well, but it actually is quite partisan 
with regard to the text, the debate, and the ultimate vote.
  Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from 
Virginia (Mr. Connolly), a distinguished member of the House Foreign 
Affairs Committee.
  Mr. CONNOLLY. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman, my good friend, for 
  Mr. Speaker, I rise today in strong support of H. Res. 326.
  ``Mirabile dictu.'' Wondrous to relate.
  Mr. Speaker, it is finally on the floor.
  I just heard a revision of history from my friend from Ohio. We were 
prepared to bring this resolution up on the floor in July. This has 
nothing to do with it. It wouldn't have even mentioned President Trump 
and Secretary Pompeo's strange acknowledgment of settlements that are 
recognized as illegal in international law.
  This resolution is not, as the gentleman from New York (Mr. Zeldin) 
would have you believe, lacking in a recitation of all the grievances 
and incidents that continue to plague Israel and the Palestinian 
people. This is a prescription for a solution, which apparently my 
friend from New York is not interested in.
  A two-state solution has been the policy of Republican and Democratic 
administrations. If you want to call it partisan, you take the blame, 
because you on the other side of the aisle are the ones who have 
blocked it.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield an additional 30 seconds to the 
  Mr. CONNOLLY. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman, my good friend, for 

[[Page H9302]]

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Members are reminded to address their 
remarks to the Chair.
  Mr. CONNOLLY. Mr. Speaker, it is the Republicans who steadfastly have 
refused even to entertain being engaged in the drafting of this 
resolution. So, yes, if you want to call it partisan, you own it. It is 
your partisanship, not ours.
  This is a restatement of United States policy. This is a prescription 
for a solution, a path toward a solution that would bring peace to both 
Israel and the Palestinian people.
  Mr. Speaker, I urge its adoption.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, for the sake of time, I will save some of my 
thoughts on what was just said. That was a very alternate version of 
reality that we look forward to addressing over the course of this 
debate. Hopefully, my friend from Virginia (Mr. Connolly) sticks 
  Mr. Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the gentlewoman from North Carolina 
(Ms. Foxx).
  Ms. FOXX of North Carolina. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman from 
New York (Mr. Zeldin) very much for yielding, and I very much 
appreciate his work on this issue.
  Mr. Speaker, I also thank the Republican Foreign Affairs Committee 
staff and Ranking Member McCaul for their tireless defense of Israel.
  Furthermore, I want to state that I have a long history of working in 
a bipartisan fashion with my dear friend, the chairman of the Foreign 
Affairs Committee, Eliot Engel. That is why it pains me to be here 
today debating a partisan resolution, a resolution that purports to 
defend a negotiated two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian 
conflict, but that is simply not what this resolution is about. If it 
were, it would be bipartisan.

  This is a partisan resolution because it makes pointed criticisms of 
the Israeli Government on delicate, divisive, internal issues. It does 
so at a time when our Israeli counterparts struggle through the 
democratic process of forming a new government.
  House Democrats would only move this unconstructive resolution to the 
floor if it achieved aims of radical leftists in scoring points against 
the Trump administration.
  But, Mr. Speaker, I ask this majority, at what cost? At what cost are 
we voting on this?
  Moving forward to this vote risks the bipartisan support that a 
negotiated settlement leading to a sustainable two-state solution has 
enjoyed for decades.
  That is why I offered an alternative resolution at the Rules 
Committee, one that would support the peace process without alienating 
our major strategic partner and ally of the United States, the nation 
of Israel.
  If there is any imperative for Congress, it should be to hold the 
Palestinian Authority to account for its efforts to bypass negotiations 
and unilaterally declare a Palestinian state.
  For decades, the Palestinian Authority has undermined the peace 
process by appealing to the United Nations and other international 
organizations to impose its own solution and impose parameters for 
negotiations with Israel.
  In 2000, Israel offered them full statehood on territory that 
included roughly 92 percent of the West Bank and all of Gaza, along 
with a capital in Jerusalem. The Palestinian Authority rejected it.
  If there is any story that deserves more attention from this 
Congress, it is that Israel has made numerous concessions in the 
pursuit of peace while seeking only the right to exist, and this 
despite the continued efforts by Palestinian leadership to evade direct 
negotiations for peace.
  That is the story this House should be telling, and that is why I 
oppose this partisan resolution that politicizes and, therefore, 
jeopardizes the sacred issue of Congress' support for Israel.
  Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to vote ``no.''

                              {time}  0945

  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from Rhode 
Island (Mr. Cicilline), a distinguished Member of the House Foreign 
Affairs Committee.
  Mr. CICILLINE. Mr. Speaker, I rise to support H. Res. 326, the 
Lowenthal resolution, to support a two-state solution to the Israeli-
Palestinian conflict.
  I thank my good friend, Alan Lowenthal, for the hard work he has done 
to support the State of Israel and to bring this resolution to the 
floor today.
  This resolution strongly reaffirms longstanding, bipartisan U.S. 
policy regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This includes 
support for a two-state solution and expresses opposition to efforts 
that undermine the prospects for a lasting peace.
  I, like so many in this Congress, have been a longtime and passionate 
supporter of Israel and the U.S.-Israeli relationship. We know that a 
strong Israel is good for America.
  But I have been increasingly concerned that this administration's 
decision to unilaterally change American policies towards Israel 
outside of any negotiation are detrimental to the long-term prospects 
for peace. This resolution makes clear that the best and only real 
solution to achieving peace is the two-state solution.
  And, again, I thank Mr. Lowenthal and Chairman Engel for bringing 
this resolution to the floor, and I urge my colleagues to support it.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to yield 3 minutes to the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Roy).
  Mr. ROY. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman from New York for his 
leadership on this issue.
  Mr. Speaker, I would remind the body that, 2 years ago today, 
President Trump said this in the Diplomatic Room in the White House: 
``Today, we finally acknowledge the obvious: that Jerusalem is Israel's 
capital. This is nothing more, or less, than a recognition of reality. 
It is also the right thing to do. It's something that has to be done.''
  Since that time, the Embassy was moved. I was privileged to join many 
of my colleagues to visit the new Embassy in Jerusalem this past 
  There, we stood, Democrats and Republicans, this August, looking at a 
border with Lebanon where Hezbollah has 150,000 rockets pointing at 
Jerusalem and at Tel Aviv.
  We went near, but not too near, to Gaza, where rockets are being 
fired at Israel and balloons are being sent over to burn fields, 
despite Israel's good faith voluntary withdrawal from there in 2005.
  But thank the Lord that America stands with Israel. Standing with 
Israel yields results for our national security and for the benefit of 
the great people of Israel, a true ally and democracy in which Jews, 
Muslims, and Christians live together with rights protected, and they 
live peaceably.
  Following our example, Guatemala has moved its Embassy to Jerusalem. 
Honduras announced recognition of Jerusalem just a few months ago.
  Just this week.
  For the first time, Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Bulgaria, 
Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Lithuania, Netherlands, Romania, Slovakia, 
Brazil, and Colombia voted against the annual resolution supporting the 
Division for Palestinian Rights of the Secretariat, which oversees the 
Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian 
People. These countries previously abstained on the vote.
  We are changing the world and recognizing Israel because we stand 
with Israel, and standing with Israel works.
  But rather than standing with Israel on a bipartisan basis, today, 
our Democrat colleagues are pushing H. Res. 326. This is a liberal, 
progressive retreat from standing with Israel and a move to have our 
Nation tell Israel what to do.
  This resolution spells out specific Palestinian Authority demands 
without listing critical Israeli preconditions, such as acknowledging 
Israel's right to exist as a Jewish state with an undivided Jerusalem 
as Israel's capital and providing assurances for Israel's safety and 
security through a demilitarized zone.
  The resolution chooses to reference President Obama's policy 
announced after the November 2016 election, while intentionally leaving 
out the Trump administration's policy, designing the resolution to be 
  This resolution is a politically motivated exercise designed to 
undermine the policy of the Trump administration, the right policy, 
announced in November, that settlements in Judea and Samaria not be 
considered a violation of international law.

[[Page H9303]]

  This resolution disproportionately criticizes the Israeli Government, 
while failing to recognize the dangerous actions targeting innocent 
Israelis that further remove the possibility of peace.
  This resolution binds the U.S. Government and calls for Israel to 
only pursue a two-state solution.
  This is wrong. We should not bind ourselves and our ally, a sovereign 
nation with equal standing before the United Nations, to only one 
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield an additional 30 seconds to the 
gentleman from Texas.
  Mr. ROY. And, moreover, to one solution that has been a failed battle 
cry because Palestinians have perpetually failed to come to the 
negotiating table to pursue it in good faith.
  How peace is reached in the Middle East begins and ends with actual 
and complete recognition of Israel's right to exist--and it is up to 
Israel to decide how and in what way a solution might be reached, 
whether that is two states or otherwise.
  The rich history of Israel is increasingly known and celebrated by 
the world. It is a great and vibrant nation.
  As we head into this celebratory season of our respective faiths, let 
us celebrate Israel, together, its greatness, and remember that America 
stands with Israel.

  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from 
Michigan (Mr. Levin), a valued member of the House Foreign Affairs 
  Mr. LEVIN of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong support of this 
  Mr. Speaker, last month, I visited Israel and the West Bank. I talked 
to Israeli Defense Forces leaders; Israeli settlers; members of the 
Knesset from many parties; U.S. Ambassador Friedman; Palestinians' top 
negotiator, Dr. Saeb Erakat; human rights activists; and ordinary 
Israelis and Palestinians.
  My trip left me more committed than ever to seeing, in my lifetime, a 
two-state solution: a democratic Jewish state living in peace alongside 
a democratic Palestine. That is why I am here today.
  My colleagues have spoken a lot about the need to safeguard Israel's 
security, and that is also why I am here today. We are at a moment when 
the prospects for a peaceful two-state solution--something that has 
long had overwhelming bipartisan support in this country and from 
Presidents from both parties--could be fading. If we let them fade, 
prospects for lasting security in Israel will fade as well.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield an additional 15 seconds to the 
gentleman from Michigan.
  Mr. LEVIN of Michigan. Because, make no mistake, without a two-state 
solution, Israel's future as a secure democratic homeland for the 
Jewish people will be in jeopardy. And Israelis, like the ones I 
visited in Netiv HaAsara, will continue to live in fear of rocket fire 
that gives them 8 seconds to reach a bomb shelter.
  We need to express our support for a two-state solution, and I thank 
the chairman and my colleagues, Representatives Lowenthal, Bass, and 
Connolly, for their leadership.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from North 
Carolina (Mr. Price).
  Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Mr. Speaker, this is an Article I 
moment. The President has sowed doubt about this country's historic 
commitment to two-state diplomacy, diplomacy that aims at a secure, 
democratic, and Jewish future for Israel, and that aims at a state of 
their own and self-determination for the Palestinian people.
  It is extremely important for this Congress to assert itself as a 
coequal branch of government at a time when this historic American 
commitment is being questioned and undermined.
  This resolution makes clear that Israeli settlement expansion is 
unhelpful and that unilateral annexation of the territory is 
destructive of the prospects for peace. The resolution also reaffirms 
U.S. support for the security of Israel. And it makes clear that it is 
unacceptable for the President to cut off Palestinian aid, as he 
unilaterally has done, despite this aid being duly appropriated by this 
  This is unacceptable. We need to assert ourselves as an institution 
and reaffirm support for the two-state solution, which is really the 
only reliable path forward.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, as I am listening to different colleagues on the other 
side of the aisle speaking about this resolution, some are claiming 
that this is not partisan and that the timing doesn't have anything to 
do with the Trump administration, and then others are coming and 
speaking that this is about rebuking the Trump administration. So I am 
unclear as far as that messaging.
  I do know that there have been multiple quotes that have been put out 
by Democrats in this Chamber that the timing is no coincidence. This 
was brought up after an announcement was made recently by Secretary 
Pompeo with regards to reversing President Obama's policy that was 
announced after the November 2016 election.
  So, where my friends on the other side of the aisle speak about 
longstanding U.S. policy, I guess it is important for a quick recap of 
that longstanding U.S. policy over recent years.
  At the end of 2016, after the November 2016 election, the Obama 
administration helped get through the United Nations U.N. Security 
Council Resolution 2334 with regards to the view of activity in Judea, 
Samaria, and parts of east Jerusalem; and, for the first time, the U.N. 
Security Council was saying that that was a violation of international 
  This Chamber, with more Democrats voting in favor of the resolution 
than against, voted for a resolution to condemn U.N. Security Council 
Resolution 2334. This Chamber had a problem on a large, bipartisan 
basis and came together to condemn U.N. Security Council Resolution 
  That is what this resolution specifically references when it says the 
Obama administration's policy from December 2016. That was great when 
we all came together like that because we had a problem with reversing 
longstanding U.S. policy with that U.N. Security Council resolution.
  Then this Chamber came together again this past summer, almost 
unanimously, passing a resolution--a strong, bipartisan resolution--
strongly condemning BDS and talking about the need for peace between 
the Israelis and the Palestinians.
  This resolution today is, unfortunately, a debate. It is a draft, and 
it is a vote that is going to be very partisan. But the inconsistency 
and the arguments on the other side of the aisle--some are saying this 
has nothing to do with President Trump and his policies and others are 
saying that it does. And some are saying that timing is no coincidence 
and others have made specific comments that it is absolutely a result 
of the Trump administration's recent announcements. Those 
inconsistencies are being noticed by all.

  Mr. Speaker, I continue to reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, it is now my pleasure to yield 1 minute to 
the gentlewoman from Texas (Ms. Jackson Lee).
  Ms. JACKSON LEE. Mr. Speaker, who on this floor would stand with me 
for peace, and who on this floor would stand against our position and 
against peace?
  It is well known that the United States, all of my life, has been a 
strong supporter of Israel, rooted in shared national security 
interests, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law.
  I have sent to Israel young people, through the Mickey Leland 
Kibbutzim program, from my district for 25 years--almost 25 years--to 
develop the understanding and friendship that we continue to promote 
for the values of what Israel stands for.
  The United States has worked for decades to strengthen our 
assistance. We are intertwined through national security. And, in 
essence, this two-state solution is a solution toward peace.
  I have been to Palestine and met the Palestinians and their leaders 
over the years that I have served in the United States Congress. 
Presidents Bush, Clinton, and Obama stood with Israel, as we all stand 
today. But we stand with peace and the understanding of the two-state 
solution. Let us stand united.

[[Page H9304]]

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield an additional 15 seconds to the 
gentlewoman from Texas.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE. I invite my Republican friends to join on the 
resolution, H. Res. 326. Do not read into it anything more than a 
pathway to peace, discussion, and dialogue, recognizing the dignity of 
all people.
  I join my friends, my Jewish friends, my friends from Palestine, and 
I join Americans in wanting a two-state solution.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I continue to reserve the balance of my 

                              {time}  1000

  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentlewoman from New 
York (Mrs. Lowey), who is the chairwoman of the Committee on 
  Mrs. LOWEY. Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong support of H. Res. 326, a 
resolution that reaffirms the House of Representatives' longstanding 
support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
  Throughout my life and my 31 years serving in this great body, I have 
never lost hope that there will one day be two states for two peoples--
a democratic Jewish state of Israel and a democratic Palestinian state 
living side by side in peace, security, and mutual recognition.
  We cannot be naive. This will not be easy. Gaza continues to be run 
by Hamas, a terrorist organization responsible for attacks on Israel 
and the suffering of Palestinians in their borders. The Palestinian 
Authority has been a poor partner for peace, walking away from 
reasonable peace plans and the negotiating table altogether. And 
rhetoric from the Israeli Government officials about unilateral 
annexation pushes a future, negotiated solution farther from reality.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield the gentlewoman from New York an 
additional 15 seconds.
  Mrs. LOWEY. But we cannot and we must not lose hope. Simply put, a 
two-state solution for Israelis and Palestinians is the only means to 
ensure Israel's long-term security and enable Palestinian aspirations 
for their own state.
  I thank my colleagues whose hard work brought this important 
resolution to the floor, and I urge immediate passage.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from 
Maryland (Mr. Hoyer), who is the majority leader of the House.
  Mr. HOYER. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Mr. Speaker, there are few alliances as critical to America's 
national security, to global stability, and to our Nation's values as 
the U.S.-Israel relationship. Israel and America share common values 
and together are committed to the principles of democracy and 
individual freedom. The United States will always stand by our ally, 
Israel, period.
  Let me be clear. Military assistance to Israel is critical to 
America's national security. It is an investment in our security as 
well as Israel's. That is why I am opposed to imposing conditions on 
that assistance.
  Since even before its independence in 1948, Israel has sought to 
achieve a secure peace with its neighbors on the basis of the principle 
of self-determination for both the Jewish people and for the 
Palestinian people. The Jewish people deserve to live in peace and 
security in their ancestral homeland, and Palestinians deserve the 
opportunity to chart their own future of peace and opportunity in a 
land of their own. That was the foundation of the peace process in the 
1990s and subsequent efforts by Israeli Governments to achieve peace 
with security.
  It makes clear in this resolution that both parties ought to take 
meaningful steps to end mistrust and avoid obstacles to peace. This 
includes encouraging both sides not to take any steps that make the 
pursuit of peace harder. Unfortunately, that has not always been the 
case, and the attacks on Israel undermine daily--and if not daily, too 
often--the ability to achieve an agreement helpful to the Palestinians 
as well as the Israelis.
  I want to thank my friend and leader of the Foreign Affairs 
Committee, Chairman Engel, Representatives Lowenthal, Pocan, Deutch, 
Price, Schakowsky, and Gottheimer, representing a broad spectrum of 
feelings about how we deal with and support our ally, Israel. But they 
have come together, as well as all of the members of the Foreign 
Affairs Committee, to work hard to ensure that this resolution 
reaffirms Congress' strong support for the U.S.-Israel relationship, 
while contributing positively to helping Israel achieve the peace and 
security it seeks with the Palestinians.
  The resolution says that settlements and annexation are inconsistent 
with that objective. I hope Members will support this resolution. I 
disagree with my friend from New York, that this is not policy that has 
been adopted by Republican administrations as well as Democratic 
administrations. To say this is an Obama policy that we are 
overturning--which is apparently much of what the focus of this 
administration is, overturning the policies of their predecessor--is 
incorrect. George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush believed that a 
contrary policy would undermine the realization of peace between two 
  Mr. Speaker, I hope that we will on a bipartisan basis overwhelmingly 
support the restatement of America's policy.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from Oregon 
(Mr. Blumenauer).
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. Mr. Speaker, we should not split hairs. We need to 
reaffirm our policy with this resolution because Congress in the past 
has not been clear enough. In my visits to Israel I have been struck 
how young people, Palestinian and Jews alike, believe passionately in a 
two-state solution, but, increasingly, they doubt that it is possible.
  Unfortunately, the Trump administration's reckless policies are 
increasing that doubt. The latest is giving a green light to the 
destructive settlement policy and its expansion. Make no mistake: Trump 
and Netanyahu are currently careening towards a one-state solution, one 
that will challenge the ability of Israel to be both a democracy and a 
Jewish state.
  Jimmy Carter said in his book that we are choosing between democracy 
and apartheid. This resolution suggests that we choose for democracy a 
negotiated solution; and reaffirming our longstanding goals, correct 
the ambiguity, get us back on track, and give hope to those young 
people in Israel, both Jew and Palestinian.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentlewoman from 
California (Ms. Lee).
  Ms. LEE of California. Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the gentleman for 
yielding and for bringing this bill to the floor.
  Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong support of H. Res. 326 which I am proud 
to cosponsor. It really is an important resolution affirming the United 
States' support for a two-state solution, which has been longstanding 
bipartisan consensus for decades. It also makes clear that Congress 
opposes any action by the White House to encourage unilateral 
annexation of the West Bank.
  Mr. Speaker, this resolution is not only needed but it is incredibly 
timely. The Trump administration is actively working against a two-
state solution and lasting peace at every step, from support for 
unilateral annexation of the West Bank to reversal of U.S. policy 
toward illegal Israeli settlement expansion which jeopardizes Israeli 
  This resolution reaffirms the United States' commitment to a lasting 
peace in the region which can only be achieved through a negotiated 
two-state solution for both Israelis and Palestinians.
  For the first time, this resolution includes clear language that the 
United States should resume assistance to the Palestinians.
  I thank Chairman Price. Let me just say it is an incredibly important 
step. I thank Congressman Lowenthal and Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib for 
taking a bold step and seeking common ground.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

[[Page H9305]]

The majority are tying themselves up in knots.
  With all due respect to the majority leader, who said there was not a 
departure in policy towards the end of the Obama administration and 
that I was incorrect; I would like to point him to H. Res. 11 from 
January 2017, that he voted in favor of as well as most House 
Democrats, which included: ``Whereas on December 23, 2016, the United 
States Permanent Representative to the United Nations disregarded 
H.Con. Res. 165 and departed from longstanding United States policy by 
abstaining and permitting United Nations Security Council Resolution 
2334 to be adopted under Chapter VI of the United Nations Charter.''
  That is from a resolution that the majority leader voted in favor of, 
where he personally, and many others in this Chamber on both sides of 
the aisle, took strong exception with that departure from longstanding 
U.S. policy with U.N. Security Council Resolution 2334, now reversing 
that, once again, with the text of this resolution that is giving a 
shout-out to that December 2016 Obama administration policy as if it is 
something to be applauded.
  Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentlewoman from 
Michigan (Mrs. Dingell).
  Mrs. DINGELL. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of H. Res. 326.
  It is critical that we take serious steps to reiterate the United 
States commitment towards a just two-state solution to the conflict 
that allows both Israelis and Palestinians to live in peace side by 
  Unfortunately, recent developments have put this vision, which 
remains the only viable framework for a lasting peace in the region, 
further out of reach.
  Settlement activity in the West Bank has increasingly threatened the 
viability of a future Palestinian state in the region, and there is now 
open talk of Israeli annexation of the Jordan Valley. Settlements erode 
any possibility of a continuous, viable Palestinian state.
  Additionally, the Trump administration's recent move to overturn 
decades of U.S. policy and legitimize the settlement activity 
represents a body blow to future peace and prosperity. In addition, the 
Trump administration's policies have discredited valid Palestinian 
claims to also have their capital in Jerusalem. We also cannot forget 
the humanitarian situation in Gaza which is untenable.
  Mr. Speaker, this demands a response, and that is why we need a two-
state solution to deal with it.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the gentlewoman from 
Michigan (Ms. Tlaib).
  Ms. TLAIB. Mr. Speaker, I rise today as a proud granddaughter of a 
strong, loving Palestinian woman, my sity. For me to stand up for her 
human dignity, I must oppose H. Res. 326.
  This resolution not only endorses an unrealistic, unattainable 
solution, one that Israel has made impossible, but also one that 
legitimizes inequality, ethnic discrimination and inhuman conditions.
  Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Likud party have actively fought 
against a two-state solution and took steps to ensure its demise. They 
increased their illegal taking of Palestinian homes, imprisoned more 
Palestinian children than ever before, and are building walls right now 
to annex the West Bank and other Palestinian villages.
  Moreover, Israel's nation-state law, which states that only Jews have 
the right to self-determination, has eliminated the political rights of 
the Palestinian people and effectively made them second-class citizens.
  Separate but equal didn't work in our country, and I can't see that 
it is possible in other countries. Given our Nation's history of 
segregation, we should recognize when such injustices are occurring. We 
cannot be honest brokers for peace if we refuse to use the words: 
illegal occupation by Israel.
  Our country and the United States Congress must condemn these 
undemocratic actions. We must take bolder actions to ensure that human 
rights are upheld in Israel and that Palestinians and Black Israelis 
are treated with equality every human being deserves.
  To honor my Sity Mufteih who lives in the occupied West Bank, 
Palestine, I am unable to support this resolution today. She deserves 

                              {time}  1015

  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from 
Florida (Mr. Deutch), a distinguished member of the House Committee on 
Foreign Affairs.
  Mr. DEUTCH. Mr. Speaker, I thank Chairman Engel, and I rise in 
support of a resolution that speaks to a two-state solution that 
enhances the security and stability of Israel, a two-state solution 
that recognizes the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people 
for a state of their own and one that will come about only through the 
direct negotiations of Israelis and Palestinians.
  The words in this resolution matter. The words that reaffirm that it 
is in the national interest to continue to stand by our ironclad 
commitments under the MOU, which seeks to help Israel defend itself 
against a wide range of threats, is a critical statement at this moment 
in our Nation's history.
  Those are the words that are the language of this resolution. That is 
why I support it.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself the balance of my time.
  Mr. Speaker, again, I rise in strong opposition to this resolution. I 
encourage all of my colleagues to oppose it as well.
  It is no coincidence that this resolution is being brought now. It is 
an attempted rebuke of the Trump administration.
  I think that this Chamber should be coming together and praising the 
decision to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, that this 
Chamber should be coming together and praising the decision to 
recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights. We all should be 
coming together on a bipartisan basis with regard to the implementation 
of the Taylor Force Act.
  The Palestinian Authority has a policy not just to incite violence 
but to financially reward terrorism. If you murder an innocent American 
or Israeli, by policy--this is no secret; it is documented; it is their 
own admission--they will pay you money.
  Now, as far as this Chamber goes, we are stewards of U.S. tax 
dollars. To send money to the Palestinian Authority, as long as they 
have a policy where they are going to pay someone for murdering an 
American, that is something that this Chamber should be coming together 
on, on a bipartisan basis, with regard to the implementation of the 
Taylor Force Act and how to do even better.
  This resolution attempts to get into that world of what preconditions 
need to be met in order to have an agreement between Israelis and 
Palestinians. It chooses to stay silent with regard to any of the 
Israeli preconditions on the Palestinians, but this resolution chooses 
not to be silent on the preconditions of the Palestinians toward the 
Israelis. Not just in the text of the resolution but today in the 
debate, the goal is to place pressure on the Israelis, on what they 
need to make concessions on, by not saying anything at all with regard 
to Palestinians committing acts of terror and being financially 
rewarded for it, saying nothing about Hamas.
  Hamas literally put in their charter that jihad is an obligation. I 
wonder where Hamas stands.
  If the Palestinian Authority sat down with Israelis and right now 
agreed, I don't know if whoever would sign that document on behalf of 
the Palestinian Authority would be assassinated within days. But I will 
say that he can't in good faith deliver all of his people because not 
only are the ranks of the Palestinian Authority filled with the likes 
of terrorist groups like Hamas--and Hamas is a designated foreign 
terrorist organization of the United States--not only can they not 
deliver their people, Hamas doesn't just refute the argument that 
Israel has a right to exist as a Jewish state, Hamas refutes the 
argument that Israel has a right to exist.
  How are we silent about a resolution? If you want to get into 
preconditions, how do we not get into any acts of Hamas denying access 
to humanitarian aid to its own people or the fact that they use women 
and children as human shields, that Hamas will pay someone

[[Page H9306]]

to get shot? A kid goes to a checkpoint, gets shot, and gets paid $500.
  Right now, as we are here--I mean, literally, as the decision is 
being made to bring this resolution to the floor, Israel is getting 
showered by rockets from a terrorist group in Gaza, hundreds of rockets 
targeting innocent Israelis, kids who are going to school or are 
worshiping or are at home or are running to bomb shelters because they 
have rockets being launched at them, trying to kill them.
  That is the issue with getting into that world of preconditions, only 
talking about the preconditions that the Palestinians want to place on 
the Israelis, and then to double down and triple down during floor 
debate and to be silent entirely with regard to any of the 
preconditions toward peace.
  December 2016 is specifically referenced in this resolution. This 
House came together and condemned that December 2016 policy. After the 
November 2016 election, this House came together in January on a huge 
bipartisan basis and condemned that change of policy in December 2016.
  The reversal here in this resolution is now this resolution is 
specifically referencing the December 2016 policy as if it is something 
to be celebrated.
  What we should be doing right now is passing legislation with teeth--
by the way, a whole lot of legislation with teeth: passing USMCA; 
lowering the cost of prescription drugs, a bipartisan agreement that 
passed out of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce; passing S.1/
H.R. 336, legislation with teeth to stop BDS, to help support Israel 
with teeth; authorizing funding to support Jordan; legislation with 
teeth to increase sanctions on Assad in Syria.
  This bill has already passed the Senate with all of these different 
Republicans and Democrats, almost 80 Senators passing it.
  Bill numbers are set based on what is important. What is important to 
the Senate? That was S.1.
  We made a strong statement last summer, almost unanimously passing a 
resolution condemning BDS, including language toward peace between the 
Israelis and the Palestinians. We should have woken up the next day 
united to now do something about it.

  It is one thing to make a statement about anything that anyone in 
this Chamber is passionate about, and I respect the different passions 
and backgrounds of all of my colleagues. There are people who have 
different opinions on just about anything that comes for a vote in this 
  When we choose to make statements of something that we feel strongly 
about, it is important to wake up the next day and say: ``Okay, well, 
what are we going to do about it?'' That is why, while I am so proud of 
my colleagues for voting almost unanimously for that resolution, we 
should be passing S.1/H.R. 336.
  Mr. Speaker, I ask for all of my colleagues to oppose this 
resolution, and I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. ENGEL. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself the balance of my time to 
close debate on this measure.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield to no one, no one in this Chamber, when it comes 
to support for Israel. I supported moving the Embassy to Jerusalem, the 
eternal capital of the Jewish people. I am happy to have an honest 
debate about the Middle East so long as that debate is on the policy, 
on the merits. That is true when it comes to my friends on the other 
side and with Members of my own party. That is why we are here, and 
that is what the House of Representatives is all about.
  I want also to point out that this resolution, an important part of 
this resolution, says that there are to be no conditions on U.S. aid to 
Israel. That is something that is very important, and I think it is 
very important that we state that.
  The debate on foreign policy turns toxic when the issue is tainted by 
party politics, when support for Israel is politicized through motions 
to recommit or poison pill amendments. Politics should stop at the 
water's edge, and that is what normally guides our work on the 
Committee on Foreign Affairs.
  What happens when we ignore that? What happens is that decisions 
about our own security and leadership on the world stage are trumped by 
decisions about our own political interests. That makes us less safe. 
What happens is that decisions about how we treat our friends and 
partners around the world are trumped by decisions about what may be 
more appealing to our political base or political supporters. That 
makes our friends and partners less safe, less trusting, less confident 
in America.
  If we allow partisan politics to contaminate our foreign policy, we 
do so at our peril and the peril of many others around the world. We 
cannot allow that to happen when it comes to Israel, our most important 
ally in the Middle East.
  For two decades, support for a two-state solution has won bipartisan 
support. Even when they disagreed on many policy issues, Presidents 
George W. Bush and Barack Obama agreed on this.
  Of course, no one said anywhere along the line that it would be easy 
to achieve, but that doesn't mean we give up. It means we dig in and 
keep pushing and working to change minds. That is what American 
leadership is all about.
  I sincerely hope that my colleagues don't walk away from that. Those 
of us who are strong supporters of Israel understand that Israel is 
best served by a two-state solution, that a two-state solution is not 
good for only Palestinians but also good for Jews, also good for 
Israelis, also good for all people in the Middle East. That is what we 
are trying to do.
  My commitment to the U.S.-Israel relationship is second to none, to 
nobody. That is why I do believe, by passing this resolution today, we 
are attempting to bring the parties together, attempting to state U.S. 
policy, acknowledging the fact that U.S. and Israel are unshakeable 
  This is simply saying that there is a dispute, that there are two 
peoples, two states for two peoples. That seems fair to me, and I urge 
all of my colleagues to vote for this resolution.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. RUSH. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to express my thoughts on H. Res. 
326, which expresses the sense of the House of Representatives 
regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
  While I am a firm believer in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process 
and the two-state solution, I am disappointed that the version of the 
resolution brought to the Floor did not reflect the language as 
introduced, language that I and 191 of my colleagues cosponsored.
  It remains my firm belief that the United States must continue to 
call for an end to Israeli settlement expansion and oppose Israel's 
unilateral annexation of territory. Furthermore, the United States must 
do more to uphold human rights and ensure that democratic ideals are 
preserved as part of the process.
  All humankind deserves to live a productive life without fear of 
threat to their safety. That is why I remain committed to the peace 
process and welcome the opportunity to work with my colleagues, on both 
sides of the aisle, to achieve that aim.
  Ms. BASS. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of House Resolution 
326, a resolution I drafted with Congressman Alan Lowenthal and 
Congressman Gerry Connolly to express the support of Congress regarding 
efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through a 
negotiated two-state solution.
  For more than 20 years, U.S. Presidents from both political parties 
and Israeli Prime Ministers have supported reaching a two-state 
solution that establishes a Palestinian state living side by side with 
Israel in peace and security. I am proud to have assisted in drafting 
this important resolution, which affirms that commitment.
  Our government's established decades-worth of commitment to a two-
state solution in order to enhance stability and security in the Middle 
East and to ensure the state of Israel's survival while addressing the 
legitimate desires of the Palestinian people for a state of their own 
reflects our fundamental dedication to promote peace.
  This resolution builds on our ongoing commitment and our historic 
alliance with Israel. I strongly support it.
  Ms. JOHNSON of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in strong support of 
House Resolution 326. This resolution expresses this chamber's strong 
support for the longstanding belief that a two-state solution to the 
Israel-Palestine conflict is the best option to ensure Palestinian 
autonomy and Israel's survival as a Jewish democratic state.
  During my time in this chamber, I have been a firm supporter of a 
negotiated two-state solution between Israel and Palestine. While I 
believe both parties will have to make difficult decisions to ensure a 
long-lasting peace, I believe it can be done in a way that ensures that

[[Page H9307]]

the human rights of Palestinians are respected while also securing the 
safety of our closest ally in the region.
  This administration's capitulation to Benjamin Netanyahu and his 
allies on the extreme right in Israeli domestic politics has severely 
damaged the ability of the United States to be considered a fair 
neutral party in this conflict. It has made Israel less safe in the 
long term and has only driven Palestinians into the arms of bad actors 
in the region like Hamas.
  In May 2018, this administration chose to abandon our European allies 
by announcing the withdrawal of the United States from the Joint 
Comprehensive Plan of Action, commonly known as the Iran Nuclear Deal. 
Shortly thereafter, the Administration relocated the United States 
Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem while subsequently eliminating the 
Consulate General office in Jerusalem, which served as a key diplomatic 
line to the Palestinian Authority.
  Additionally, this administration has stripped funding from the 
United Nations Relief and Work Agency. This agency has worked 
tirelessly to help Palestinian refugees in Gaza, the West Bank, Syria, 
Lebanon, and Jordan, by providing food, housing, education, and other 
necessities. Eliminating these funds jeopardizes the ability of the 
UNRWA to help these individuals live as normal a life as possible. It 
also threatens the security of the Israeli people by ensuring more of 
these people turn to terrorist organizations like Hamas when their 
basic needs fail to be met.
  Last month, Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, announced that Israeli 
settlements in the occupied West Bank did not violate international 
law. This drastic change in policy on the issue of Israeli settlements 
essentially gives the green light to the Israeli government to 
unilaterally annex portions of this region. Any form of annexation 
would essentially kill the idea of a two-state solution.
  Mr. Speaker, we are voting on this resolution today to show the 
international community that regardless of this administration's 
reckless actions, the United States can play a constructive role in 
resolving this conflict that has lasted for more than 70 years. I urge 
all my colleagues to swiftly pass this resolution.
  Ms. McCOLLUM. Mr. Speaker, as a co-sponsor of H. Res. 326 as 
introduced on April 25, 2019, I support Representative Lowenthal's 
determination to advance U.S. leadership in seeking a diplomatic 
resolution to achieve a ``two-state solution'' to end the Israeli-
Palestinian conflict. Unfortunately, amendments to the resolution mean 
I can no longer vote in favor of H. Res. 326 and I will be voting 
  For years, I have heard colleagues say, ``It's only a resolution. It 
really doesn't mean anything.'' At a time when the Trump administration 
is actively taking policy actions to inflict pain on the Palestinian 
people while giving a green light to Israel's annexation of Palestinian 
lands, a statement by the House of Representatives to Israelis and 
Palestinians does mean something.
  Is there any doubt Israel and the security of the Israeli people have 
the strong support of Congress? There is zero doubt. But millions of 
Palestinians working to build a peaceful future feel that they have 
been abandoned by Congress and attacked by the White House. The U.S. is 
no longer an honest broker in any diplomatic peace initiative between 
Israelis and Palestinians. The language added to H. Res. 326 stating an 
``ironclad commitment'' to $38 billion in foreign military aid only 
highlights the contrast that there is no ironclad U.S. commitment to 
human rights or even providing the most basic life-saving humanitarian 
aid to the Palestinian people. This House vote today does not reflect 
the reality on the ground.
  This is the time to unequivocally support both the Palestinian 
people's right to self-determination, justice, equality, and human 
rights as well as Israel's right to live in peace and security. U.S. 
aid must never be an ``ironclad'' blank check to any nation. I believe 
if U.S. military aid to Israel is being used to enable or support the 
military detention and torture of Palestinian children, the demolition 
of Palestinian homes, or the annexation of Palestinian lands there 
should be conditions on that aid--not cuts to aid, but conditions--as 
has been done to aid to the Palestinians.
  Striving for an Israeli state and a Palestinian state living side-by-
side in peace and security is worth the effort of every Member of 
Congress. But that means Congress will need to support the legitimate 
rights, needs, and aspirations of both Palestinians and Israelis. In my 
opinion, H. Res. 326 maintains the status quo and fails to move us 
towards achieving peace. A peace that both Israelis and Palestinians 
deserve and need.

                [From Noa Landau, Lisbon, Dec. 5, 2019]

  Netanyahu Says `Our Full Right' to Annex Jordan Valley, Despite ICC 
                           Prosecutor Report

       AFP Lisbon--Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Haaretz 
     Thursday that it's Israel's full right to annex the Jordan 
     Valley if it chooses to do so.
       PM says political deadlock hinders controversial move, 
     adding: `Exactly because of that we should form a government 
     now and do it'
       Earlier Thursday, International Criminal Court Prosecutor 
     Fatou Bensouda expressed concern over Israeli proposals to 
     annex this West Bank region.
       Asked on the matter by reports in Lisbon, the premier said 
     ``It's our full right to do so if we decide,'' despite the 
     ICC prosecutor's report.
       Asked about a timeline for the proposed annexation, 
     Netanyahu said ``there are some questions about what can be 
     done in a transition government. Exactly because of that we 
     should form a government now and do it.''
       When asked whether he would agree to renounce serving first 
     as prime minister in a rotation agreement if Kahol Lavan 
     agrees to annex the Jordan Valley and to a defense treaty 
     with the United States, Netanyahu said ``those things will be 
     achieved when I'm prime minister. I have thousands of hours 
     on American prime-time TV and that has a certain influence on 
     the United States, especially now. I won't be able [to 
     influence] if I'm not prime minister.''
       Netanyahu refused to tell the press whether he intends to 
     seek immunity from the Knesset in his three pending 
     corruption cases and cancel Likud's primary election, arguing 
     he wouldn't address personal matters in the briefing.
       ``I intend to invest every effort, despite Kahol Lavan's 
     objection, to reach an agreement and prevent this truly 
     unnecessary election. Benny Gantz can [prevent it] if he 
     manages to overcome Yair Lapid and if [Avigdor] Lieberman 
     overcomes himself,'' Netanyahu said, referring to Kahal Lavan 
     co-leader and Yisrael Beiteinu chairman, who said he has no 
     intention to have his party join a narrow, right-wing 
     government headed by Netanyahu.
       ``I hope that a minority government with the Joint List is 
     not an option,'' the premier said, reiterating a claim that 
     his political rivals are backed by Arab lawmakers.
       When asked why he refuses to resign, the prime minister 
     said that ``the public has chosen me. Let the public 
       Responding on the option of holding a direct election for 
     the prime minister between him and Gantz, Netanyahu said: 
     ``First, let's try to avoid another election, but this that's 
     an option that's becoming interesting.''
       Earlier today, Netanyahu met with U.S. Secretary of State 
     Mike Pompeo after his phone call conversation with U.S. 
     President Donald Trump on Sunday, when they also discussed 
     the annexation of the Jordan Valley, which Netanyahu told 
     voters in September he would achieve.
       Before taking off from Tel Aviv, Netanyahu told reporters 
     his meeting with Pompeo would be focused on ``Iran, first of 
     all,'' a mutual defense treaty and a ``future'' American 
     recognition of Israel's annexation of the Jordan Valley.
  Ms. MOORE. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of this resolution that 
reaffirms longstanding U.S. policy regarding the two-state solution and 
which squarely condemns unilateral acts by any party (and I hope the 
Administration understands that includes the U.S.) that undermines that 
  The two-state solution has been such a central part of the U.S. 
policy for this region that it rightly deserves its own debate in this 
House, rather than just a passing reference in legislation as we have 
seen in the past.
  As noted by the resolution, for more than 20 years, ``Presidents of 
the United States from both political parties and Israeli Prime 
Ministers have supported reaching a two-state solution that establishes 
a Palestinian state coexisting side by side with Israel in peace and 
  Yet, somehow the two-state solution has now become a controversial 
position, including within the current Administration which goes out of 
its way to not even mention it as a goal of our policy anymore. In 
light of the Administration's refusal to even say the phrase, more and 
more leaders in the region feel emboldened to also publicly oppose two 
states living side by side in peace and security.
  It is even more critical now that the U.S. Congress unambiguously and 
clearly express support for the two-state solution.
  Current trends are moving us farther away from peace or security and 
the Administration's efforts are doing nothing to stop that. As a 
hundred of my colleagues and I recently noted in a letter to the State 
Department, the Administration's recent announcement declaring that 
Israeli settlements in the occupied territories do not violate 
international law as far as the U.S. is concerned, ``following the 
administration's decision to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem outside 
of a negotiated agreement; its closure of the Palestinian mission in 
Washington, D.C. and U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem; and its halting of 
aid Congress appropriated to the West Bank and Gaza, has

[[Page H9308]]

discredited the United States as an honest broker between Israel and 
the Palestinian Authority, severely damaged prospects for peace, and 
endangered the security of America, Israel, and the Palestinian 
  This legislation sends a clear message that any U.S. proposal to 
achieve a just and lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict 
``should expressly endorse a two-state solution as its objective.''
  Additionally, the resolution also makes clear that ``Presidents of 
the United States from both political parties have opposed settlement 
expansion, moves toward unilateral annexation of territory, and efforts 
to achieve Palestinian statehood status outside the framework of 
negotiations with Israel.''
  It reaffirms the Administration's obligation to actively ``discourage 
steps by either side that would put a peaceful end to the conflict 
further out of reach, including unilateral annexation of territory or 
efforts to achieve Palestinian statehood status outside the framework 
of negotiations with Israel.''
  I don't have to tell my colleagues that unilateral actions, such as 
annexation or unilateral declarations of statehood will not or cannot 
achieve the peace or security that is so urgently desired.
  Additionally, I know that this legislation has been changed to remove 
references to occupation and to the settlement enterprise. Whether you 
agree or disagree with those changes, doing so does not and will not 
change the actual facts on the ground or the obstacles to peace that 
remain. And our debate should be based on recognizing those facts, 
however discouraging or contentious they may be. The Israeli's and 
Palestinians deserve a debate that does so accurately.
  The time for pushing for peace is always now.
  But let's be clear, the sentiment in this resolution is only a start. 
Acknowledging the need for two states is important but even more so is 
working to actually achieve it. And that is where work needs to happen.
  What we need are bold steps forward. Not some half-baked peace plan 
that has taken nearly three years to develop, is apparently subject to 
the whims of the U.S. and Israeli election cycles, and has already been 
dismissed by key stakeholders in the region.
  If the Administration refuses to do so, then its time that Congress 
consider what actions it can take to make the vision of the two-state 
that we so beautifully describe in this resolution into a reality. 
Because today, the reality on the ground is one state, continuing 
tensions, and cycles of violence that can easily escalate.
  It's no longer good enough to give lip service to two-states.
  So I thank the leadership for bringing this to the floor and for 
welcoming this debate in the House.
  And I know that the two-state solution has its critics who are just 
as frustrated as I am that both sides have seemingly never failed to 
miss an opportunity to let peace slip away. But the deadly status quo 
is no substitute. And wishful thinking for some other ``alternative'' 
option also is no substitute.
  Achieving two-states was never going to be easy. Peace never is.
  But ending the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is vital to the interests 
of our country, Israel, the Palestinians, and the broader region and 
international communities. This is why we continue to advocate for two-
states despite the setbacks and spoilers.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Veasey). All time for debate has 
  Pursuant to House Resolution 741, the previous question is ordered on 
the resolution and on the preamble, as amended.
  The question is on adoption of the resolution.
  The question was taken; and the Speaker pro tempore announced that 
the ayes appeared to have it.
  Mr. ZELDIN. Mr. Speaker, on that I demand the yeas and nays.
  The yeas and nays were ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to clause 8 of rule XX, further 
proceedings on this question will be postponed.