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Jerusalem not Israel? Supreme Court rules only president Obama has power to recognize nations...

Jerusalem not Israel? Supreme Court rules only president Obama has power to recognize nations...

THE WASHINGTON POST

The Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional Monday a congressional attempt to allow Americans born in the contested city of Jerusalem to list Israel as their birthplace on passports, affirming the principle that the president alone has the power to recognize foreign nations.

The divided court treaded carefully in dealing with the “delicate subject” that is Jerusalem’s sovereignty, as well as previously unsettled disputes between presidents and Congress about the conduct of foreign policy.

But a majority of the court came down decisively on the side of the executive branch when the question is the recognition of foreign countries and their territorial boundaries.

“Put simply, the nation must have a single policy regarding which governments are legitimate in the eyes of the United States and which are not,” wrote Justice Anthony M. Kennedy. And if the nation must speak with one voice, “that voice must be the President’s.”

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