Surrogates for three Republican presidential candidates pledged they would move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem if elected.
In a debate Tuesday in New York, campaign representatives for Rudy Giuliani, John McCain and Mitt Romney all promised to respect an American law calling for the embassy’s transfer from Tel Aviv. The debate, held at a Manhattan law firm, was organized by the Republican Jewish Coalition.
“I think Jews are smart, so I think they’re going to vote for Rudy,” said Guiliani’s surrogate, Ken Kurson, in response to a question about the candidate’s appeal to Jews who mostly tend to vote Democrat.
Kurson said that like Bill Clinton, who was seen as the country’s “first black president” for his strong support among blacks, Giuliani would be the country’s first Jewish president, said Kurson, noting the candidate’s broad support in America’s most Jewish city.
Kurson wore a yarmulke in the debate and proudly identified himself as a Jewish gun owner.
McCain’s surrogate, Randy Scheunemann, joined Kurson in promising not to fund the government of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, but elicited jeers from the audience when he said the United States should find alternative means of funneling humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people.
Addressing the same question, Romney’s surrogate, Steven Schrage, said funding should be tied to results.