It appears that John Kerry is leaving the door open for another White House run.
The former secretary of state reportedly told Palestinian leaders, including a personal friend of Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas, that they should “be strong” and “hold on” when it comes to dealing with President Donald Trump.
That’s because Kerry is “seriously considering” challenging him in 2020, according to The Jerusalem Post.
The comments, originally reported by the Israeli newspaper Maariv, came after Kerry met with Hussein Agha, a close confidant of Abbas, in London.
Kerry, who used to serve as a U.S. senator from Massachusetts, reportedly offered the Palestinian government telling details about his future in politics, and gave sharp rebukes to the current White House administration.
“Hold on and be strong,” Kerry said, offering encouraging words to the Palestinian leaders.
The former Democrat senator said “(Abbas) should stay strong in his spirit and play for time, that he will not break and will not yield to President Trump’s demands.”
Kerry added that he did not believe Trump would remain in office for longer than a year, hinting that there would be some sort of challenge to the Republican president’s authority.
The report that Kerry is considering a 2020 presidential run greatly surprised his international hosts, who were unaware of his future political ambitions.
News of Kerry’s White House interest comes as the Israel-Palestine conflict has reached partisan heights in the U.S.
Former President Barack Obama and Kerry earned the scourge of Israeli leaders when they orchestrated the controversial Iran nuclear deal, which led to the lifting of numerous economic sanctions against the Iranian regime in turn for their vow to place a hold on their nuclear ambitions.
However, relations with the Jewish state have skyrocketed with the presidency of Trump, who is a close friend of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The Trump administration has taken the historic step of officially recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and plans to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
The moves, which have been lauded by American conservatives and the Jewish people, were conversely met with contempt by local Arab leaders and most U.S. Democrat politicians.
If he chooses to run, this would not be Kerry’s first presidential campaign. The Massachusetts Democrat won his party’s nomination in 2004, but went on to lose by wide margins to then-President George W. Bush. In fact, the election was the last time a Republican Party presidential nominee won both the popular vote and the Electoral College.
Bush was successfully able to label Kerry a liberal elitist from the East Coast who flip-flopped on almost every political issue.
Kerry later vacated his Senate seat to serve as Obama’s secretary of state, succeeding Hillary Clinton.
Many critics argue he is responsible for large stumbles in foreign policy, including the Iran deal. Mounting evidence points to Iranian leaders not holding up their end of the bargain and instead continuing to pursue nuclear capabilities.
During the 2012 presidential election, then-Republican candidate Mitt Romney referred to Russia as America’s number one international adversary. Obama and Kerry both panned the suggestion, with the Massachusetts senator delivering a speech deriding the Republicans’ comments.
Of course, the Democratic Party’s stance on Russia has changed in recent months.
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