US Congress overwhelmingly passes Abraham Accords resolution

US Congress overwhelmingly passes Abraham Accords resolution
The US House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed a bill intended to strengthen the Abraham Accords with little opposition.
3 min read
Washington, D.C.
27 April, 2023
The US House has passed a resolution to strengthen the Abraham Accords. [Getty]

US Congress has overwhelmingly voted to pass a resolution aimed to strengthen the Abraham Accords, with mainly a handful of progressive Democrats and one Republican dissenting.

The vote, which took place on Tuesday, was 400-19 in favour of the resolution, which is intended to 'honour' Israel's 75th anniversary when it forcibly expelled the most of the indigenous Palestinian population and announced a state.

The House resolution is described as "Encouraging the expansion and strengthening of the Abraham Accords to urge other nations to normalise relations with Israel and ensure that existing agreements reap tangible security and economic benefits for the citizens of those countries and all peoples in the region."

Though the text of the resolution is simple and vague, without adding anything specific to the once-controversial Abraham Accords, it appears to be a symbolic gesture of support for a government that is increasingly seeing international scrutiny of its human rights record. However, what it leaves out could also be important.

"Unlike previous resolutions passed close to Israel's Independence Day, this resolution did not mention the importance of a two-state solution or mention the Palestinians," Anwar Mhajne, assistant professor of political science at Stonehill College, told The New Arab.

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"Instead," she noted, "it focused on strengthening the Abraham Accords, which some view as the alternative route for forcing Israel and the Palestinians to make concessions and achieve 'peace.'" 

"It is important to note that the efforts to facilitate normalisation with Saudi Arabia are at the heart of it." she added.

Thomas Massie, of Kentucky, the only Republican to vote against the resolution, has a history of voting against the grain on many issues, including in some instances on Israel. Examples include: in 2014, he voted against making Israel a strategic partner; in 2019, he was the only Republican to vote against a resolution condemning the Palestinian BDS movement; and in 2021, he was the only Republican to vote against extra funding for Israel's Iron Dome defence system. As a libertarian Republican, his stances on these issues appear to be related to government spending.

The Democrats who voted against this recent resolution related to the Abraham Accords include: Cori Bush of Missouri, Jared Huffman of California, Summer Lee of Pennsylvania, Betty McCollum of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Mark Pocan of Wisconsin, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Pramila Jayapal of Washington, Chuy Garcia of Illinois, Andre Carson of Indiana, Raul Grijalva of Arizona, Jamaal Bowman of New York, Hank Johnson of Georgia, Nydia Velazquez of New York, Mark DeSaulnier of California and Delia Ramirez of California.