Press Release

ADL Disappointed by Supreme Court’s Ruling in Zivotofsky v Kerry

Urges This Administration to Face the Reality That Jerusalem is the Capital of Israel

New York, NY, June 8, 2015 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today expressed disappointment with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Zivotofsky v. Kerry, which held that American citizens born in Jerusalem may not list “Israel” as their place of birth on their American passports.

ADL, joined by 12 other groups, had filed an amicus brief arguing that Americans born in Jerusalem should be able to identify their country of birth on their passport in the same way other American citizens born abroad may do.

Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:

The question for the Supreme Court in this case involved a simple and ministerial act – whether or not U.S. citizens born in Jerusalem should be allowed to list their birth place as Israel. The answer to that should have been an easy yes. And the Court did not have to issue a sweeping decision about executive power to reach that conclusion.

However, now that the Court has issued a ruling emphasizing the role of the Executive in recognizing foreign nations, it is time for this administration to step up. How long will the U.S. government continue to have this hypocritical and myopic approach?

It is sad and unfortunate that Israel – as a sovereign nation – is the only country in the world whose capital comes under such scrutiny and has to defend its right to determine where its capital city exists.

It’s time for the Executive Branch to face the reality: Jerusalem is the capital of Israel.

Other organizations signing the brief include the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, B’nai B’rith International, Central Conference of American Rabbis, Hadassah, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, the National Council of Jewish Women, the National Council of Young Israel, the Rabbinical Assembly, the Union for Reform Judaism, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, Women of Reform Judaism, and the Women’s League for Conservative Judaism.

The brief was prepared by the firm Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. in Boston.