In a declaration that many will see as yet another pre-Senatorial campaign play, Gov. Rick Scott waded into foreign policy waters Wednesday.
His take: the U.S. Embassy in Israel should be in Jerusalem, not Tel Aviv.
That position is fairly standard among those on the right, and Scott timed his espousal of it as an appetizer for a trade mission to Israel — the Governor’s first since 2011.
“As we prepare for this important trade mission, it is clear that our entire nation must also continue to strengthen this partnership with Israel. I strongly believe that the U.S. Embassy belongs in Jerusalem and I am hopeful that a decision will be made to finally move the embassy to the its rightful destination in Israel’s capital city,” Scott said in a press release with a Jacksonville dateline, even as he gave no hints of this position while talking to media in the city.
Scott’s statement comes just one day after Vice President Mike Pence told Israelis that President Donald Trump was mulling the logistics of moving the embassy from Tel Aviv.
The Jerusalem Post notes that in June, President Trump signed a waiver blocking the embassy move; however, White House officials said it was a matter of “when, not if” it will happen.
Scott’s press release outlined some aspects of the trade mission, including a celebration of direct flights on the Israeli El-Al airline from Miami to Tel Aviv, and economic development meetings designed to bolster $286 million in annual trade between Israel and Florida.
“Working with international partners like Israel is critical to strengthening Florida as a global destination for trade and to ensuring that our economy will continue to grow for years to come. Our previous trade mission to Israel was an astonishing success, and I look forward to sharing how far Florida has come in just seven years,” Scott noted