Scalise: If Hamas is criticizing Jerusalem decision, Trump must be on right track

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) on Wednesday praised President Trump for his expected announcement to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and begin the process of moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv, arguing that if the militant Palestinian Islamist group Hamas disapproves of the decision then Trump is doing something right.

"When a terrorist organization like Hamas is criticizing it, then maybe he’s on the right track," Scalise said on Fox Business Network's "Mornings with Maria."
 
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"President Trump has reset that, and I think shown he is willing to back up our allies, and in this case, enforce the law — the federal law for over 20 years that has said that the capital of Israel is Jerusalem," he continued.
 
Trump is expected to make the announcement later on Wednesday. White House officials told reporters on Tuesday the president will declare that the U.S. recognizes Jerusalem as the capital, but will delay moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv. However, Trump will direct the State Department to begin the process of the move. 
 
Jerusalem is at the center of a dispute between the Israelis and Palestinians over who has rightful claim to the holy city. Trump's move would go against the precedent set by previous presidents despite Israel's longtime push for the U.S. to recognize Jerusalem as its capital. Palestine has long said Jerusalem should be set aside for a future Palestinian state.

Past presidents have said the status of the city, which has a number of holy site for multiple religions, must be decided through negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

Palestinians and top officials from other states in the region are warning that such a move would end the two-state peace talks, and possibly cause violent conflict to erupt in the region. 

Hamas reportedly called for a “Day of Rage” to happen on Friday, urging Palestinians to use “all available means” to protest against Trump’s plan.

Asked if the U.S. should be concerned, Scalise said Hamas has had "days of rage for years and years" without achieving peace.

The Louisiana lawmaker said Trump's decision to stand up for Israel, the U.S.'s closest ally in the region, will help to peacefully resolve the conflict.
 
"I think that gives us a better chance to get peace, when you're not willing to roll over and let terrorist organizations dictate the terms,” he continued.
 
Israeli leaders argue Hamas, a U.S.-designated terrorist organization, has no interest in making peace with Israel.