Two administration officials said on Thursday that even as Trump was considering the controversial declaration, he was expected to again delay his campaign promise to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.
It accused the race of "yielding to political pressure" from Israel and "lending recognition to Israel's illegal hold over occupied east Jerusalem". The United Nations has made every effort to try and prevent Jerusalem from being recognized the undivided capital of Israel, even going as far as passing a resolution in 1980 that Israel declaring Jerusalem as the capital was in violation of international law.
The next deadline comes on Monday, and some reports in Washington suggest that Trump is planning a speech on the issue next week, before Pence heads to Jerusalem.
Trump has signed the waiver once, and grudgingly, after vowing to Jewish-American supporters that he would be the president to finally make the switch permanent.
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The president at the time, Bill Clinton, did not obey Congress, which could have created a constitutional crisis - and one thing Bill Clinton did not need was another one of those.
Trump is likely to issue a waiver on moving the embassy by Monday, officials said, though they cautioned that the president could always decide otherwise. "This would be the ultimate first".
Ha'aretz on Thursday reported that the State Dept.is already updating its embassies around the globe about the planned move, so US ambassadors can inform their host governments, as well as, wherever necessary, prepare for Benghazi-style responses in certain countries.
It could, however, help satisfy the pro-Israel, right-wing base that helped him win the presidency and also please the Israeli government, a close US ally. When I wrote a preview of the Trump administration's Mideast policy last December, Aaron David Miller, a former State Department Middle East negotiator who served in multiple Democratic and Republican administrations, told me that moving the embassy "would send a powerful signal that the Israel-Palestinian peace process, at least for the Trump administration, is closed for the season". But I think it's initiating a national conversation about practices in our businesses and in our public institutions that will make sure that women and men have the kind of work environment that is safe and respectful to all concerned. One option under consideration is to include in any such statement a nod to Palestinian aspirations for their capital to be in east Jerusalem. For some reason, the administration believes this would be an easier frog for the PA and Gaza Arabs to swallow.
The U.S. also faces legal constraints. Ever since King David conquered the city, Jerusalem has been the hub of Jewish life. It was seventy years ago that the nation of Israel in a miracle of history came back into existence in its ancient homeland and every day Americans have cherished that accomplishment and we'll be there to celebrate that.