President Trump has received legal advice from David Friedman in a number of bankruptcy proceedings in the past.
David Friedman prepares to testify before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on his nomination to be US ambassador to Israel on February 16.
Friedman's representatives have indicated that he intends to apologize for the remark during the hearing Thursday, but the bankruptcy lawyer has also made problematic comments on other groups, including the Anti-Defamation League, whose leaders he called "morons" for raising questions about a pre-election ad in which Trump spoke about secretive worldwide banking conspiracies while featuring images of Jews that Trump associated with his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton.
Friedman has also attacked the J Street organization in the past saying that its members were "worse than kapos", and said that the Anti-Defamation League were "a bunch of morons". He apologized to New Hampshire's Jeanne Shaheen for offending one of her constituents whose uncle survived the Holocaust with his writings, including when he said liberal Jews "suffer a cognitive disconnect in identifying good and evil", offering to call the constituent personally. "If you want me to rationalize it or justify it, I can not. These were hurtful words and I deeply regret them, they were not reflective of my nature or my character".
"A website connected to Friedman's fundraising group describes Beit El's institutions as "'facts on the ground' in the face of the global community's desire to uproot us".
"The inflammatory rhetoric that accompanied the presidential campaign is entirely over", Friedman said during his confirmation hearing.
J Street, the radical left wing anti-Israel movement has begun a campaign to have the US Senate reject Friedman's nomination as the next U.S. Ambassador to Israel. Marco Rubio of Florida and Sen. On Wednesday, with visiting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at his side, Trump dropped a USA commitment to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, long a bedrock of Washington's Middle East policy, even as he urged Netanyahu to curb settlement construction.
Friedman has also called former president Barack Obama and his administration "blatantly anti-Semitic" and is a fervent supporter and financial backer of Israeli settlements, an opponent of Palestinian statehood and the two-state solution.
"I'm looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like", Trump said. But he said he would be "delighted" if it were possible to reach a two-state agreement.
"[Friedman] has argued that two states for two peoples is "an illusory solution in search of a non-existent problem". "Ambassadors are civil servants - they fulfill what the president tells them to do".
"I don't think anyone would support a state where different classes of citizens had separate rights", Trump's nominee stated, according to Haaretz. Dozens of countries, including the US, reaffirmed their support for a two-state accord at an global conference in Paris last month, just before Trump's inauguration.
So far, only two diplomatic posts have been officially approved by the Senate Committee: Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and UN Ambassador Nikki Haley.