Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.) explained the exclusion of language recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital in the 2012 Democratic national platform as a "technical error" that had not been discussed at all during the drafting process.
"Essentially, with Jerusalem, it was a technical omission and nothing more than that," Wasserman Schultz said Thursday on CNN. "There was never any discussion or debate commentary over adding or subtracting it."
A day earlier, Democrats amended the 2012 party platform to include language recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital. The language had previously not been in the 2012 platform, but was included in the 2008 platform. President Obama himself reportedly intervened to make sure the language was included in the latest platform.
Wasserman Schultz stressed that the missing language did not reflect Obama's view on Israel and that the change was not made in response to criticism. She stressed that it was just "essentially a technical omission." Aides to Obama stressed Thursday that the president did not know the language was missing in the party platform until Wednesday, just before the language was promptly changed.
"The adding of Jerusalem into the platform was making sure that the platform reflected more clarity on what was already a strongly pro-Israel platform that reflects President Obama's view," Wasserman Schultz said.
The DNC chairwoman said that Obama wanted to make sure the language was in there just to make clear his administration's strong pro-Israel position.
"And so, for purposes of clarity he thought it was important to add that in," Wasserman Schultz said.
Republicans were quick to criticize Democrats for the omission. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said the missing language and the change to the party platform reflected the Obama administration's "vacillating" stance toward Israel.
"President Obama’s failure to take a coherent and decisive stand in recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel reflects his administration’s vacillating policies toward the Jewish state," Cantor said in a statement released by Mitt Romney's presidential campaign.
Cantor added that the entire episode of changing the language was "a case study in political posturing."