U.S. Governors' Declarations of Principle

Republican Governors Association and Democratic Governors Association

(June 2002)


The respective Republican and Democratic versions of the Governors' Declarations of Principle, released together in June 2002 by the Republican Governors Association and the Democratic Governors Association, differ in few respects. Most notably, the Democratic declaration, compiled by California Governor Gray Davis, asserts that "both the Israeli people and the Palestinian people have the inherent right to live in peace and security." The Republican declaration, organized by New York Governor George Pataki, includes no reference to the Palestinians. The offices of the two governors described any differences in the two versions as insignificant. They also reported that most of the seven governors who declined to sign the respective declarations preferred to leave such matters concerning foreign policy to the federal government. Those who did not sign include Minnesota independent Jess Ventura, Hawaii Democrat Benjamin King, Oregon Democrat John Kitzhaber, Michigan Republican John Engler, Montana Republican Judy Martz, and Wyoming Republican Jim Geringer.


Republican Version

1. We, Governors representing individual states of the United States of America, declare our steadfast support for the state of Israel and for peace in the Middle East.

2. We wholeheartedly deplore and reject acts of terrorism and the deliberate targeting of innocent civilians, and call for an immediate end to the campaign of incitement, terror and violence, particularly homicide bombings, which have claimed countless innocent lives, and derailed the peace process.

3. We recognize that the United States and Israel are allies in the defense of freedom, tolerance and democracy; when those ideals are attacked anywhere, they are attacked everywhere.

4. We stand in solidarity with the people of Israel and renew our commitment to a viable, lasting and secure peace.

5. We support the President's call upon all parties in the region to do their utmost to fight terrorism and to achieve peace in the region.

Democratic Version

1. We, the Governors representing individual states of the United States of America, declare our unequivocal support for the State of Israel and for the Middle East Peace Process.

2. We call for an immediate end to the campaign of terror and violence that has claimed countless innocent civilians, derailing the peace process.

3. We wholeheartedly reject acts of terrorism and the deliberate targeting of innocent civilians with bullets and bombs as a means of conflict.

4. We agree that both the Israeli people and the Palestinian people have the inherent right to live in peace and security.

5. We recognize that the American people and the Israeli people cherish the same ideals: freedom, tolerance and democracy; when those ideals are attacked anywhere, they are attacked everywhere.

6. We stand in solidarity with the people of Israel and renew our commitment to a viable , lasting peace and the peace process pursued by our respective governments.


Source: The Forward, (June 14, 2002)