In The News

Other organizations are hoping to offer policy support to the campaigns from behind the scenes. Halie Soifer, executive director of the Jewish Democratic Council of America, said her organization has been in touch with “all of the campaigns.” But she does not see significant differences between the candidates when it comes to policy on Israel.

“Among all of the candidates running for president there is agreement on support for a two-state solution, support of U.S. leadership in the region that would bring about a two-state solution, support of military aid to Israel, support of the U.S.-Israel relationship, and opposition to the BDS movement,” said Soifer.

For Soifer, how the candidates answer some specific policy questions are less important than their overall approach to Israel and to the region. When asked how a Democratic candidate should respond in the event of Israeli annexation of West Bank settlements, Shnider of J Street spoke of “broadcasting that there will be a cost if Israel annexes West Bank settlements,” but said that J Street would not advocate placing conditions on U.S. funding to Israel.

For many voters, the difference in tone between a Democratic approach to Israel versus a Republican one may be more important than the policy specifics. “This administration no longer supports the two-state solution, so just the fact that every Democratic candidate and the Democratic Party itself supports the two-state solution is a key distinction between where Democrats stand and where Republicans stand,” said Soifer.