Last month, we reported on the possibly sad news that Philadelphia’s Israeli consulate was planning to shut its doors. The Philadelphia-Israel Chamber of Commerce, which mounted an apparently furious lobbying effort to reverse that decision, now announces that the consulate will not in fact shut its doors. The Chamber’s President Richard Bendit, in an email letter announcing the decision, thanks basically everyone who ever could have possibly been involved in this decision.
On behalf of the PICC, in addition to the thousands of individuals who supported our effort (too numerous to name here), we would like to thank the following officials and organizations for their cooperation:
- Prime Minister Netanyahu, President Shimon Peres, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, Ambassador Ron Dermer, Consul General Yaron Sideman, Deputy Consul General Elad Strohmayer, and the Philadelphia Consulate team;
- US Senator Thomas R. Carper, US Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr., US Senator Patrick J. Toomey, US Representative Allyson Y. Schwartz, US Representative Chaka Fattah, US Representative Jim Gerlach, US Representative Michael G. Fitzpatrick, US Representative Charles W. Dent, US Representative Robert A. Brady, US Representative John C. Carney, Jr., PA Governor Tom Corbett, DE Secretary of State Jeffrey W. Bullock, PA State Treasurer Robert M. McCord, PA Senator Daylin Leach, PA Senator Michael Stack, PA Senator Dominic Pileggi, PA Senator Joseph B. Scarnati III, PA Speaker of the House Sam Smith, Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter, Montgomery County, PA Commissioner Chair Joshua D. Shapiro, and the entire Philadelphia City Council; and
- The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia,The Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, The World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia, The University City Science Center, The Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay, and The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh.
It seems unlikely that Bibi Netanyahu and Shimon Peres were on the phone, lobbying for Philadelphia’s little Logan Square consulate to stay open. But hey, if this list is even 10% accurate, it’s easy to see why the plans were put on hold.