Chaos hits Dem convention floor over “God” and Israel
Similar to the contested changes last week on the floor of the RNC, the DNC erupted in a chorus of boos and chaos today as the topics of whether “God” and a pro-Israel stance should be part of the Democratic 2012 platform.
Report from Yahoo News:
Needled by Mitt Romney and other Republicans, Democrats hurriedly rewrote their convention platform Wednesday to add a mention of God and declare Jerusalem the capital of Israel after President Barack Obama intervened to order the changes.
The embarrassing reversal was compounded by chaos and uncertainty on the convention floor, requiring three votes before a ruling that the amendments had been approved. Many in the audience booed the decision.
The episode exposed tensions on Israel within the party, put Democrats on the defensive and created a public relations spectacle as Obama arrived in the convention city to claim his party’s nomination for a second term.
The language in the party platform — a political document — does not affect actual U.S. policy toward Israel. The administration has long said that determining Jerusalem’s status is an issue that should be decided in peace talks by Israelis and Palestinians.
Obama intervened directly to get the language changed both on Jerusalem and to reinstate God in the platform, according to campaign officials who insisted on anonymity to describe behind-the-scenes party negotiations. They said Obama’s reaction to the omission of God from the platform was to wonder why it was removed in the first place.
Here is video of the vote:
Some delegates were angered by the change.
“There was no discussion. We didn’t even see it coming. We were blindsided by it,” said Noor Ul-Hasan, a Muslim delegate from Salt Lake City, who questioned whether the convention had enough of a quorum to even amend the platform.
Also restored from the 2008 platform was language calling for a government that “gives everyone willing to work hard the chance to make the most of their God-given potential.”
For decades, Republican and Democratic administrations alike have said it is up to the Israelis and Palestinians to settle Jerusalem’s final status — a position reiterated earlier Wednesday by the White House. Both sides claim Jerusalem as their capital, and the city’s status has long been among the thorniest issues in Mideast peace talks.
Clearly the question of whether that sounded like two-thirds of the delegates is up for debate. As stated by a commenter in the previous post regarding the RNC chaos, when a vote is that close, a roll call vote should be taken instead.
Obviously President Obama doesn’t want to be known as the Democrat who presided over all references to “God” being removed from the party platform.
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