Missouri House Speaker Dean Plocher is pushing for the legislature to officially recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s “eternal capital.” This resolution, introduced on January 3, has been met with criticism from activists who argue that it promotes the genocide of Palestinians in Gaza.

The St. Louis Palestine Solidarity Committee, a coalition of concerned Missourians, has condemned the resolution, calling Plocher’s rhetoric “white supremacist, anti-Palestinian, and Islamophobic.” They argue that legislators should not use their power to support a state that is committing atrocities against civilians.

The resolution, known as HCR 30, also echoes former President Donald Trump’s declaration in 2017, which recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. This language is concerning to advocates for Palestine, who argue that it praises a state that is using weapons bought with U.S. taxpayer dollars to harm innocent people.

The death toll for Palestinians in Gaza at the hands of Israel’s military has reached 27,131 people, with 66,287 wounded, as of February 2. In comparison, the death toll in Israel from Hamas attacks stands at 1,139. Some evangelicals have pointed to biblical language to support the idea that Jerusalem is Israel’s “eternal capital,” but this resolution acknowledges that source and states that “Israel has been granted her lands under and through the oldest deed, as recorded in the Torah or Old Testament, a tome of scripture held sacred and revered by Jews and Christians alike.” 

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