Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), the House majority leader, just delivered what has become a traditional joint appearance with Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), the minority whip, at the annual AIPAC conference, aimed at reinforcing the notion of bipartisan support for Israel.
At least once, they appeared at the same time on stage. More often they appear, as tonight, at the same session. (Hoyer has yet to speak as I write this.)
So Cantor started with props for Hoyer — and then proceeded to target the Obama administration.
I’m waiting for a full transcript, but meanwhile check out @GOPLeader, his Twitter feed. The fact that his staff chose to highlight some of his sharper remarks seems to underscore Cantor’s expressed concerns about President Obama.
When there is no American leadership; there is no leadership. #aipac2013
America must be prepared to lead from the front. And the challenge should not be Israel’s alone to bear. #aipac2013
Our enemies know that if they divide the United States from Israel, they will defeat Israel. #aipac2013
As important as they are, defensive systems like Iron Dome, David’s Sling, and the Arrow are not panaceas. #aipac2013
I worry that some of our nation’s leaders overlook the gift that is Israel. #aipac2013
I have never questioned America’s historic support for the little guy against the bully. Until now. #aipac2013
One caveat: after delivering the above statement, Cantor continued: "I worry that some of our nation’s leaders are complacent," and cited those who would "in pursuit of comity with Israel’s foes … seek distance" (his allusion to Obama). But also cited were those who look inward to "domestic" issues — Cantor’s allusion, I think, to foreign funding budget slashers like his party’s own Rand Paul.