Americans in Israel Register to Vote after DNC Flap

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- More Americans in Israel want to vote in the U.S. presidential elections in November following the Democrats' initial decision to remove references to Jerusalem (and to God) from its party platform. 

That decision could be responsible for a spike by Americans in Israel -- some with dual Israeli-American citizenship -- to register to vote.

Marc Zell, co-chairman of Republicans Abroad in Israel, told CBN News he received 50 phone calls Wednesday from Americans interested in registering to vote.

Zell said that was "more than a coincidence" coming a day after the DNC removed a reference to Jerusalem as Israel's capital from 2012 party platform. They reinserted the reference the next day.

More than 100,000 Americans living in Israel have registered to vote by absentee ballot in the upcoming elections, Zell said, estimating that at least 2 to 1 will vote Republican.

Meanwhile, Speaker of the Knesset Reuven Rivlin said the Democrats' omission of Jerusalem from the platform -- originally adopted with those changes Tuesday evening -- was not a slip-up.

In a radio interview Thursday, Rivlin said he had "no doubt that President Obama restored Jerusalem to the platform because of political and electoral pressure" and "because of the sharp criticism from Israel and the U.S."

Rivlin says the backlash convinced Obama to reinstate the references, a decision, he says, that elicits "no cause for optimism."

"This is not something that can be corrected with the stroke of a pen," he said. "It's a problematic sign indicating the gradual reduction of the American government's strategic commitment to Israel."

The new platform now reads, "Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel...an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths." The party also restored the phrase, "God-given potential" to its platform.

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