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White House Responds to Stefanik’s Israel Speech: ‘No Better Friend to Israel’ than Biden

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U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana, left, and Representative Eli
Allison Robbert/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The White House issued a statement responding to Rep. Elise Stefanik’s (R-NY) speech to the Israeli parliament in which she criticized President Joe Biden for stopping a shipment of weapons to Israel.

White House spokesperson Andrew Bates issued a statement in response to Stefanik’s speech, pointing out that Biden had been “the first American president” to go to Israel “during war time,” according to the Hill.

Bates added, “there has been no better friend to Israel” than Biden has been.

“He was the first American president to visit Israel during war time — in the aftermath of the horrific October 7th terrorist attacks — and the first president to order the U.S. military to defend Israel from a foreign nation’s attack,” Bates said in his statement.

Stefanik’s speech comes weeks after the Biden administration halted a shipment of ammunition to Israel and after Biden stated during an interview with CNN that he would withhold artillery and other weapons to Israel if they moved forward with an invasion of Rafah, the last stronghold for the U.S.-designated Islamic terror group, Hamas.

White House - US President Joe Biden holds a press conference following a solidarity visit to Israel, on October 18, 2023, in Tel Aviv, amid the ongoing battles between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Thousands of people, both Israeli and Palestinians have died since October 7, 2023, after Palestinian Hamas militants based in the Gaza Strip, entered southern Israel in a surprise attack leading Israel to declare war on Hamas in Gaza on October 8. (Photo by Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP) (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

President Joe Biden holds a press conference following a solidarity visit to Israel, on October 18, 2023, in Tel Aviv, amid the ongoing battles between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas in the Gaza Strip. (BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

During her speech to members of Israel’s parliament, also known as the Knesset Stefanik said:

As long as I serve the American people I will defend George Washington’s vision of religious pluralism and freedom. Today, this means crushing antisemitism at home and supplying the State of Israel with what it needs, when it needs it, without conditions to achieve total victory in the face of evil.

Chants of death to America are not hollow slogans. They are a promise that what happened here on October 7th, could happen in the United States unless Hamas and its jihadist accomplices are eliminated. And, it is the United States’ high honor and high responsibility to support Israel’s efforts. I have been clear at home, and I will be clear here: there is no excuse for an American president to block aid to Israel. Aid that was duly passed by the Congress. There is no excuse to ease sanctions on Iran, paying a $6 billion ransom to the world’s leading state sponsor of terror, or to dither and hide while our friends fight for their lives. No excuse — full stop.

Stefanik continued to point out that she has sponsored and supported “every measure to aid Israel that has come before the United States Congress.”

“And, it’s why for years I have been a leading proponent and partner to President Trump in his historic support for Israeli independence and security,” Stefanik added. “Including, moving the U.S. Embassy to its rightful place in Jerusalem.”

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