POLITICO: Pelosi leads delegation to Israel, Jordan
April 2, 2018
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) will lead a delegation of Democrats to the Middle East beginning Saturday with stops in Israel and Jordan.
Ten House Democrats will accompany Pelosi on the trip, which will focus on “global and regional security and cooperation issues,” according to her office.
“Our delegation is pleased to be able to extend the congratulations of the American people to the people of Israel as we celebrate the 70th anniversary of Jewish state this spring,” Pelosi said in a statement.
The overseas visit comes as Congress kicks off a two-week Easter and Passover recess after passing a $1.3 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September. Overseas congressional trips, known as “CODELs,” are common when lawmakers have a lengthy break.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee, will accompany Pelosi, as will Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.), another member of the panel. Other members on the trip include Reps. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), Henry Cuellar (D-Texas), Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) and Katherine Clark (D-Mass.).
Freshmen Reps. Donald McEachin (D-Va.), Jimmy Panetta (D-Calif.) and Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) will also take part. No Republicans are joining.
Tensions between the U.S. and Jordan have been inflamed in recent months after President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and announced plans to relocate the U.S. embassy there from Tel Aviv.
Jordan’s King Abdullah II called the U.S. decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital “a complication” to the Middle East peace process in an interview on CNN in early February. But the U.S. and Jordan signed an agreement later in February boosting annual U.S. aid to the country.
“In Jordan, our delegation travels at a vital time in the U.S. relationship with this key ally,” Pelosi said. “Members are particularly interested in reviewing the Syrian refugee and humanitarian challenges as well as addressing other critical challenges facing the region.”