Leader Cantor Expresses Disappointment in President's Mideast Speech
May 19, 2011
Contact: Doug Heye, Megan Whittemore
202-225-4000

Washington, DC – House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) today issued the following statement in reaction to President Obama’s speech on Middle East policy:

"Today, the President outlined his hopes for Mideast peace – a goal that we all share – but failed to articulate a serious plan for achieving this goal. This approach undermines our special relationship with Israel and weakens our ally’s ability to defend itself. The President’s habit of drawing a moral equivalence between the actions of the Palestinians and the Israelis while assessing blame for the conflict is, in and of itself, harmful to the prospect for peace. In reality, Israel - since its creation - has always proven willing to make the sacrifices necessary for peace, while the Palestinians on numerous occasions have rejected those offers.

"This conflict is not about land or Israel’s neighborhoods beyond the Green Line. Three wars were launched against Israel prior to its establishment of new borders in 1967. By keeping the burden and thus the spotlight on Israel, the President is only giving the Palestinian Authority more incentive to carry on its unhelpful game of sidestepping negotiations and failing to put an end to terrorism. Creating another Palestinian terror state on Israel’s borders is something that none of us want. The White House referred to today’s speech as a ‘Moment of Opportunity,’ and I’m disappointed that the President’s remarks missed both the moment and the opportunity.”