CA Democratic Party’s Arab American Caucus Condemns Romney’s Racist Comments about Arabs and Palestinians
(SACRAMENTO, CA, 7/30/12) — The California Democratic Party’s Arab American Caucus (AAC) today condemned Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney’s racist comments about Arabs and Palestinians during a fundraiser in Jerusalem.
During the event today, Romney said he couldn’t help but notice the “dramatically stark difference in economic vitality” between Israel and “the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority,” and he concluded, “Culture makes all the difference.”
“Romney had clearly ignored the impact of the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank which has disrupted commerce in Palestinian areas for decades,” said Arab American Caucus Board Member Rashad Al-Dabbagh.
Israel maintains trade and mobility restrictions over the occupied territories of the West Bank and Gaza – restrictions that both the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund have said for years are key factors in hampering Palestinian economic growth.
Governor Romney also caused a stir when he said in a speech Sunday that “it is a deeply moving experience to be in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel.” Officially, the United States – in line with most of the international community – does not recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Instead, it considers the city’s status an issue to be negotiated between Israelis and Palestinians, who claim East Jerusalem – seized by Israel in the 1967 war – as their capital. As a result, the US keeps its embassy in Tel Aviv.