The Hill: Congress Watches Netanyahu's Speech And N.Y. Special Election | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

The Hill: Congress Watches Netanyahu's Speech And N.Y. Special Election

Play associated audio

Hope For Resuming Peace Negotiations

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are backing a call for Israeli and Palestinian leaders to resume peace negotiations after Netanyahu spoke to a joint session of Congress Tuesday. Democrats are trying to smooth over turmoil in the U.S.-Israel relationship after President Barack Obama called for land borders based on 1967 borders.

Bolton says lawmakers were impressed by Netanyahu's call to have Palestinian leaders return to negotiations and his willingness to have West Bank settlements be part of a future peace agreement.

Bolton says Sen. John Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is "very hopeful of peace negotiations resuming after listening to Netanyahu speak."

But Kerry also says figuring out Hamas' role is an obstacle.

"The question is, who does Netanyahu and the Israeli leadership negotiate with when there's a bifurcated Palestinian state, when you have separate authorities in the West Bank and in Gaza, which is run by Hamas?" Bolton says.

He says Kerry said the Palestinian authority will have to find a way to bring Hamas into the talks, "or at least to subsume Hamas within the broader Palestinian leadership."

The United States and Israel will not negotiate with Hamas directly because Hamas does not recognize Israel's right to exist.

A rebuke of Republican Medicare plans?

Tuesday Congress is also looking at the special election taking place outside Buffalo in New York's 26th District. The three-way race is between Republican Jane Corwin, Democrat Kathy Hochul and Tea Party candidate Jack Davis. Bolton says political strategists are taking interests in the race because of its potential as a bellwether for the 2012 election, similar to the way the 2010 special election in Massachusetts was seen as an indicator of 2010 midterm election results.

"When Democrats lost that Senate race at the beginning of 2010, it was seen as a public rebuke of the Democratic health care reform bill, and it was seen as a sign of things to come in the midterm elections," Bolton says. "Well, some think that this special election in New York could be a similar rebuke of Republican medicare plans and could be a sign of bad things to come for Republicans in 2012."

NPR

Jon Stewart's Replacement Is Unlikely Choice For 'The Daily Show'

"The Daily Show" replaces departing host Jon Stewart with South African comedian Trevor Noah. He is a relatively unknown comedian and an unlikely choice for the program.
NPR

Our Food-Safety System Is A Patchwork With Big Holes, Critics Say

More than a dozen federal agencies play a part in keeping food from making Americans sick. Critics say the system has gaps, and we'd all be safer if federal food safety efforts were under one roof.
WAMU 88.5

Q&A: Maryland State Sen. John Astle On 'Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day'

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan signed a bill into law Monday evening declaring every March 30 "Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day." WAMU spoke with Astle at his office in Annapolis.
NPR

Bringing Internet To The Far Corners Of The Earth

About 5 billion people are mostly or entirely disconnected from the Internet. So to capitalize on this opportunity, Google and Facebook have begun high-profile campaigns to connect the unconnected.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.