Last week, Rep. Pete Stauber announced he’d be traveling to Israel as part of a U.S. group led by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Due to security reasons, Stauber’s office did not provide details of the trip.
But there are tweets confirming the group's arrival and some of its movements. This coming after Thursday's action to bar U.S. Reps. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib from entering the country for similarly planned visits this weekend.
Stauber tweeted from Jerusalem on Wednesday — a photo of himself standing in front of the cornerstone of the U.S. Embassy.
“Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and thankfully, the Trump Administration acknowledged this fact by moving our embassy here,” Stauber tweeted.
Under orders from Donald Trump late in the first year of his presidency, the U.S. moved its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in May 2018. Trump described it as an effort to facilitate peace. But many saw it as controversial, for the way it recognized Israel's claim to Jerusalem — a capital the Palestinians also claim and a city featuring sacred sites for Christians, Jews and Muslims.
On Thursday, Israel said it would block Omar, D-Minn., and Tlaib, D-Mich., from entering the country for planned visits this weekend, blaming Omar and Tlaib for having taken pro-Palestinian positions. Trump had previously urged Israel to block the congresswomen.
Stauber, R-Minn., is part of a large delegation which includes other representatives from Congress. During the trip, Stauber and the others were scheduled to meet with senior Israeli officials, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The days of touring would take them to security sites on the Israeli-Syrian border as well as historical and cultural sites like Yad Vashem, the holocaust memorial.
One of Stauber's tweets showcased the contingent posing in front of a missile defense system.
“Shortly after arriving in Israel, we traveled to the Iron Dome Defense System, which protects the people of Israel by intercepting and destroying incoming rocket fire,” Stauber tweeted. “This is a strong example of the US-Israel defense alliance.
“As a strong supporter of Israel, I am glad to be on this incredible trip and for the chance to learn more about U.S. - Israel security relationship.”
Shortly after arriving in Israel, we traveled to the Iron Dome Defense System, which protects the people of Israel by intercepting and destroying incoming rocket fire. This is a strong example of the US-Israel defense alliance. pic.twitter.com/qlIK0erYyu— Pete Stauber (@RepPeteStauber) August 13, 2019
McCarthy, R-Calif., announced the group’s arrival with a tweet last Saturday.
“Just arrived in Israel with dozens of other members of Congress—Republican and Democrat,” McCarthy tweeted. “We are here to show unity in our support for Israel and her people.”