The American Israel Public Affairs Committee is a lobbying group that advocates pro-Israel policies to the Congress and Executive Branch of the United States. The current President of AIPAC is Lillian Pinkus.One of several pro-Israel lobbying organizations in the U.S., AIPAC has more than 100,000 members, seventeen regional offices, and "a vast pool of donors." It has been called "the most important organization affecting America's relationship with Israel," and one of the most powerful lobbying groups in the United States. The group does not raise funds for political candidates itself, but helps organize to channel money to candidates.Its critics have stated it acts as an agent of the Israeli government with a "stranglehold" on the United States Congress with its power and influence. The group has been accused of being strongly allied with the Likud party of Israel, and the Republican Party in the US, but an AIPAC spokesman has called this a "malicious mischaracterization." The Washington Post described the perceived differences between AIPAC and J Street: "While both groups call themselves bipartisan, AIPAC has won support from an overwhelming majority of Republican Jews, while J Street is presenting itself as an alternative for Democrats who have grown uncomfortable with both Netanyahu’s policies and the conservatives’ flocking to AIPAC."AIPAC, on the other hand, describes itself as a bipartisan organization, and bills it lobbies for in Congress are always jointly sponsored by both a Democrat and Republican. AIPAC's supporters claim its bipartisan nature can be seen at its yearly policy conference, which in 2016 included both parties' front-runners (Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump), as well as high ranking Democrats, including Vice President Joe Biden, and high-ranking Republicans, including Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.