2012 Presidential Election

The Major Issues: Side-by-Side Analysis

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President Obama has repeatedly reaffirmed the special relationship between the U.S. and Israel, and has raised U.S. security assistance to Israel to unprecedented levels. Under President Obama’s leadership, U.S.-Israeli defense cooperation is broader and deeper than ever.

President Obama has consistently demonstrated his ironclad commitment to Israel’s security and well-being, strengthening the unbreakable bond between our two nations. In both word and deed, the President has signaled to the world that the U.S.-Israel relationship is stronger than ever.

The President is working to address Israel’s security needs and ensure Israel’s future as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people.

- Barack Obama Official Website

President Obama and the Democratic Party maintain an unshakable commitment to Israel’s security. A strong and secure Israel is vital to the United States not simply because we share strategic interests, but also because we share common values ... the President has worked with Congress to increase security assistance to Israel every single year since taking office, providing nearly $10 billion in the past three years.

The administration has also worked to ensure Israel’s qualitative military edge in the region. And we have deepened defense cooperation – including funding the Iron Dome system – to help Israel address its most pressing threats, including the growing danger posed by rockets and missiles emanating from the Gaza Strip, Lebanon, Syria, and Iran. The President’s consistent support for Israel’s right to defend itself and his steadfast opposition to any attempt to delegitimize Israel on the world stage are further evidence of our enduring commitment to Israel’s security.

- Democratic Party Platform 2012

Israel is the United States’ closest ally in the Middle East and a beacon of democracy and freedom in the region. The tumult in the Middle East has heightened Israel’s security problems and this is a dangerous moment for the Jewish state. It has deteriorating relationships with Turkey and Egypt. It faces longstanding dangers from Hamas in Gaza, Hezbollah in Lebanon, a violent and highly unstable Syria, and a nuclear-aspiring Iran whose leadership is openly calling for Israel’s annihilation.

To ensure Israel’s security, Mitt Romney will work closely with Israel to maintain its strategic military edge. The United States will work intensively with Turkey and Egypt to shore up the now fraying relationships with Israel that have underpinned peace in the Middle East for decades. The United States must forcefully resist the emergence of anti-Israel policies in Turkey and Egypt, and work to make clear that their interests are not served by isolating Israel.

- Mitt Romney Official Website

Israel and the United States are part of the great fellowship of democracies who speak the same language of freedom and justice, and the right of every person to live in peace. The security of Israel is in the vital national security interest of the United States; our alliance is based not only on shared interests, but also shared values.

We affirm our unequivocal commitment to Israel’s security and will ensure that it maintains a qualitative edge in military technology over any potential adversaries. We support Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state with secure, defensible borders; and we envision two democratic states – Israel with Jerusalem as its capital and Palestine – living in peace and security.

- Republican Party Platform 2012

“We’ve stood by Israel’s side in the face of criticism. Our military and intelligence cooperation has never been closer ... now is the time to make sure that we are doing everything we can to protect Israel’s security ... that is an issue of how we work with one of our closest allies in the world that shares our values and believes in democracy.”

- Barack Obama (July 19, 2012)

“[The Obama Administration] has repeated this many times since, that the bonds between Israel and the United States are unbreakable … In pursuing, for example, the joint military exercises for military defense between the Israeli army and the American military; in securing Israel’s qualitative military edge; and in many other activities along the world’s scene, including the battle against the infamous Goldstone report.”

- Joe Biden (March 9, 2010)

“American and Israel are bound together by common committments and shared values ... and because we share the same values, we also share many of the same adversaries ... We know that Israel is America’s most ardent ally in the Middle East."

- Mitt Romney (October 19, 2009)

"America has no better friend in the Middle East than the nation of Israel ... [as] the region’s only fully functioning democracy, with a government based on popular consent and the rule of law ... Our shared democratic values and national interests are supported by maintaining a close friendship with Israel."

- Paul Ryan (Official Site)

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