Republican Presidential candidate and Texas Senator Ted Cruz blasted the Obama Administration Wednesday for its decision to open a US embassy in Cuba, saying that for the US to “have an embassy in Havana before one in Jerusalem” was a “slap in the face” to Israel, according to the Washington-based political website The Hill.
The administration earlier in the day announced its intention to restore diplomatic relations with its long-time Caribbean nemesis and exchange ambassadors for the first time in over 50 years.
Tel Aviv is currently home to the United States embassy, but the junior senator from the lone-star state has repeatedly called for the embassy to be moved to Jerusalem.
Another Presidential candidate, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, has also called for legislation that would do away with the national security waiver and allow the administration to implement a 1995 law to relocate the embassy to Jerusalem, The Hill added.
Known as the Jerusalem Embassy act, which also calls for the US to recognize Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel, the legislation has never been implemented due to the perception that it usurps the executive branch’s constitutional authority over foreign policy in favor of Congressional oversight.
Both Cruz and Rubio are of Cuban dissent and have publicly denounced the communist-ruled Island for its ill treatment of its inhabitants and long-time contentious posture towards the United States.