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Republican Jews Speak Out

For some Jewish conservatives, the RNC is a chance to be vocal about politics they usually keep quiet

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A Republican Jewish Coalition badge at the RNC. (Shirely Hornstein/Instagram via Republican Jewish Coalition/Twitter)

For most attendees, the Republican National Convention is all about publicity and access. It’s an opportunity for face time with politicians, photo-ops on the convention floor, and a chance to get interviewed on television. But Margo doesn’t want anyone to know she was even there. And it’s not because she’s a particularly private person—it’s because she’s a Jewish Republican.

“It really is hard to come out of the closet,” she said, echoing a sentiment I heard from many other rank-and-file Jewish conservatives over the past few days in Tampa.

“We joined a Reform Temple in the fall of 2004 in Santa Monica, and the first synagogue newsletter came out just after we had joined,” Margo recalled over lunch before a panel featuring Karl Rove and William Kristol. In it, “the rabbi invited people to come sit shiva on Tuesday morning at 9:30 a.m.—because George Bush had been reelected.

“Fast-forward to the High Holidays services of 2008 and during the sermon—I don’t remember if it was Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur—he literally was up there telling us we had to vote for Obama.” For Margo and her family, it was the last straw. “That was the end, we quit.”

Today, Margo remains unaffiliated with a synagogue. “Where are we gonna go? You want to be comfortable. … You want to feel like everybody else doesn’t think you’re evil and stupid and all that just for having different political views.” Margo told me she TiVo’s MSNBC’s Chris Matthews—“even though he’s awful”—because she says she wants to hear the other side. But she feels that her worldview isn’t often granted the same courtesy by her co-religionists.

Other Jewish Republicans I met take a more activist, engaged approach toward the broader Jewish community. Muriel Weber, a member of the Republican Jewish Coalition, explained that “if you’re not going to be at the table, then you can’t influence. If you’re not involved in things, you can’t shape them.”

As an example, Weber pointed to the Jewish Federations of North America’s General Assembly in November 2011, at which Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz delivered the keynote address. “Her speech was basically political,” Weber recalled. “It’s one thing to say that she’s entitled to talk given her position—a Jewish congresswoman—but there was no balance. And there were plenty of high-profile Republicans—both Jewish and not—that they could have brought in to provide that.”

Weber brought this issue to the attention of her local Federation in Ohio, which was somewhat sympathetic to her concerns. “The point is, they have to hear that from somebody. They have to realize that there are other people who think differently. If she’s going to be there telling everyone Obama is our best friend, when obviously not everyone thinks that’s the case, that’s really not appropriate.”

For these gadfly Jews, the Republican National Convention is a welcome respite from the ideological conformity of their home communities—a rare opportunity to hear from prominent Jewish politicians like House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, quote FOX News approvingly, and enjoy the company of the like-minded. “Usually back home in the suburbs of Cleveland, if you’re out for coffee, you talk quietly [about politics],” said Weber. “But here, you’ll be talking and someone just chimes in, and they’re supportive and it’s refreshing.” Not that it’s something she’ll be mentioning back in her Jewish community in Ohio. “There’s this undercurrent that if you believe in this stuff, if you support Mitt Romney, if you’re here [at the RNC], then you must be some sort of moron.”

***

But if some Jewish Republicans feel pressed to attend the RNC off the record, given communal realities at home, others are quite comfortable owning their affiliation–specifically, Orthodox Jews. “It’s not a problem at all,” said Max Levine of his conservative politics in his Modern Orthodox synagogue in Miami. “It’s barely a conversation. Everybody’s on the same page.”

At 33, Levine—a member of the leadership council of the Republican Jewish Coalition—is one of the youngest people in the room at most of the Jewish Republican events, and one of very few Orthodox attendees. When I told him I was looking to interview young Jewish conservatives, he laughed. “All three of us.”

But Levine, a former tax attorney-turned-financial adviser at Merrill Lynch, hopes to increase that count. He’s helping organize Rabbis for Romney—“in the Orthodox community, it’s not that difficult”—and sees Orthodox Jewry as an untapped resource for conservatives. (Right now, Rabbis for Obama has 600 members, up from 400 in 2008.)

Why would a committed Jew support the Republican Party in this election? “There are only two places where a Jew can live as a Jew right now, and that’s America and Israel,” argued Levine. “And without the strength of the economy and Western values in America, both of those have the potential to go away.”

I noted that he didn’t mention Israel policy in making his case. “I don’t demonize Obama on Israel,” Levine explained. “I think he’s made critical mistakes, primarily in perception, not necessarily mistakes in on-the-ground policy. But when he says things like ‘I want to create daylight between the U.S. and Israel,’ I think that’s very naïve and misreads how it’s going to be perceived by the enemies of Israel.

“I’m not a person who thinks that Obama is secretly anti-Israel. But I am a person who believes that Mitt Romney will do a better job handling that relationship than Obama has.” Levine acknowledged that this is a more nuanced view than found in mainstream conservative politics but said that in the Orthodox community, “I do think a lot of people share my view, though not as many as I’d expect.”

But for reasons of both foreign and domestic policy, Levine sees Orthodox Jews moving further and further into the conservative camp. “People don’t realize that while within the Orthodox community obviously issues like school choice resonate on a local level, issues like the Second Amendment also matter to Jewish voters, at least in Florida,” he said. “I don’t think people realize the degree to which the Orthodox community feels at home in the Republican Party.”

***

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Paul Brandon says:

That’s the problem with being a small minority within a small minority.
Maybe there’s a reason why most Jews are not Republicans these days.

The article doesn’t reflect the reality among all Orthodox communities–I have been attacked personally in mine because I support the GOP. It’s bizarre that Jews don’t realize that a vote for Romney secures Israel’s safe existence.

Beatrix17 says:

I’m a Reform Jew, not
particularly religious, left the Democrats after Carter’s failures,
and am now an Independent.

Definitely supporting
Romney. Obama is an intellectual who knows how to analyze power;
Romney is an experienced businessman who knows how to use it.
America is a powerful country and needs a powerful leader.

That the left is more
moral or humane is nonsense. We don’t get our compassion or humanity
from our political beliefs we bring our morality to those beliefs.

Jews tend to be
traditional and find it harder to break with the past. But that the
left views the Palestinians as black people in the 1960s fighting for
their civil rights and the Israelis as Bull Connor with fire hoses
doesn’t solve anything. The resolution of this issue is overdue, and
Romney is a grown up who can resolve it.

Most orthodox Jews (men) are comfortable in the republican party. They view women as second class citizens and want to control their bodies. They don’t believe in equal rights for gays, and are anti-science and anti-reason. They fit very well with the current republican party. And since they are such supporters of Israel, why is it that when they live there they don’t serve in the military? Hypocrites all.

A majority of American Jews see themselves as liberal, and identify with the Democratic party. Unfortunately, the Democratic party is no longer a liberal party, but one that is left leaning socialist, with a growing base of communism in its fold.

Most people who claim to be liberals that I’m in touch with, won’t even discuss the issues. Their minds are made up, and there’s no room for discussion at all.
Very few, if any, of these individuals, have had to live in the real world of business. None have ever owned a business, or tried to invest in one and start one up. They have always worked for others, and most often in social services, where taxes, for the most part, pay their salaries.

Israel is in the bottom half of top ten priorities for most Jews’ voting priorities with Gay rights and Abortion ranking ahead of Israel. So, if Israel went under and was destroyed by a nuclear weapon, most American Jews would be upset, but they would not sit shiva for Israel’s destruction. If Israel ranked as the top one or two priority for most Jews, then Romney would have the majority support of Jews.

First of all, to offset your fears, I am a businessman, entrepreneur in high-tech and owner of a company that employs people and provides them with salaries (and benefits to be clear). Let me be upfront: Your insane (yes INSANE) intellectually dishonest (let’s call it lies) discourse is so typical of the rhetoric that is being thrown at Americans. There is nothing Socialist about the Democratic party. NOTHING. A growing base of Communism? Really? Where? Name me one thing ‘Communist’ about the Democratic party or even anything of any consequence in the US. If this is Communism & Socialism then you might as well argue that FDR was a Marxist and Reagan a Trotskyite – because it’s all hogwash.

Contrary to Muriel Weber’s remarks, I don’t think all Jewish Republicans are morons. I think they’re selfish and ethnocentric and, some, downright evil. However, those like Lionel here who say unbelievably stupid things like the Democrats are “left leaning socialist, with a growing base of communism?” Those people, I absolutely think are morons.

How does it do so? You don’t know that at all. You might think it, but that doesn’t mean it’s true. It’s even more interesting in the light of history. Only recently it came out that Bush (Oh great friend of Israel!) refused to endorse the Israeli strike on the Syrian nuclear facilities…some friend eh…

The fact is that the GOP and the Democrats are (rightly) driven mostly by domestic policy. If you really want to delude yourself that X or Y are greater ‘friends’ of Israel then go ahead by all means and vote for the party that appeals most to your fantasy.

Romney hardly even mentioned foreign policy in his speech yesterday, let alone Israel. On the other hand, the Obama administration recently agreed to upgrade all security relations with Israel and has consistently and vociferously defended Israel in words and deeds.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/advancing-israels-security

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4yWRY2Yg3Q

Yet somehow you trust Romney on this? More than Obama? On what basis?

You have no clue what your talking about

Chaya says:

I rather wondered about the coverage of foreign policy in that speech. I thought I had perhaps missed it and would have to go back and view it again. The other problem is that for our last several presidents, the ones that wanted to be domestic-issue presidents and the ones that wanted to be foreign-issue presidents all wound up largely in the arena they weren’t looking for.

I can’t find the quote to cite it, I think it was here on Tablet but may have been elsewhere. I loved it but can’t claim it as my own, but it went something like “Israel’s best friends are campaigning politicians and former officeholders”. It’s the missing middle of that timeline that is the problem.

PhillipNagle says:

In our traditional synagogue in Buffalo Grove, IL, the Republicans probably outnumber the Dems.

Sharon, I actually recently wrote a piece here at Tablet that addresses and complicates some of the stereotypes you outline. I’d love to hear what you think after reading it: http://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/109721/dont-know-much-about-orthodoxy

Chaya – there’s a few reasons that Romney didn’t deal with Foreign policy in his speech:
a) He doesn’t have one! And outside of a few decent guys like Rubio (who is more of an old school GOP moderate) few GOP members have a clear vision because it would likely not be much different to the Democratic line. And the aim of the GOP is to be the OPPOSITE of anything that Obama is.
b) The modern-day, reactionary GOP does not care so much about Foreign Policy. They don’t care what foreigners do to each other or how America figures in that in so much as they only care about their corporate rights vis-a-vis the ‘outside’.
c) Jews do care by and large about Israel but for TOTALLY different reasons than most Gentiles. Look at how important the Paulites have become in the new GOP. Do you think they care about Foreign Policy? Israel? Jews? The Tea Party?
The problem with America today is the LACK of political choice and spectrum. But let’s not delude ourselves that the GOP have the answers, on a like for like basis they are very much lacking in ANY policy whatsoever – though they are very clearly that they will GUT services and government (inc. the military) – and I think we all know what will happen then.

Hi Beatrix: You said: “The resolution of this issue is overdue, and
Romney is a grown up who can resolve it.” How can he resolve it? Has he offered any ideas on how he might be able to do so? Do you think he’ll even care if he takes office and presides over the complete implosion of government and his promised gutting of services and medicaid? Do you think he really CARES? I don’t. Obama aside, there is nothing that Romney has said that indicates even the slightest hint that he has any solutions to anything.

Beatrix17 says:

Israel is one of the top
priorities of most Jews. Jews on the right have often moved to the
right in order to find that support. Jews on the left live in the
past and think that left wing Presidents still support Israel and so
they don’t have to worry about it.

Israel, the most left
leaning people in the universe, have moved to the right. I wonder
how long it’s going to take American Jews to wake up.

Yet still Israel has universal mandated healthcare, social benefits, housing benefits, non-profit co-operatives for housing and retail, labour unions, rights for immigrants etc. Everything the GOP hates. Jews/Israelis have moved to the right on security issues but please don’t confuse this with being the same as the motivations of the GOP – they are not aligned. Are you really asking for US Jews to drop all their beliefs on domestic social policy for example, to support the GOP simply because somehow you believe they are better friends of Israel? To me that sounds like a patronising attitude.

Beatrix17 says:

I’m on Social Security,
am not wealthy and I’m voting for Romney because I think he will do a
better job than Obama. I do not fit any of your stereotypes. In
fact, I identify with the businessman who resents being called a
Communist because he’s a Democrat. In your world, he and I would
have to change places because he’s the one with money and I’m not.

I tell you what, if the GOP institutes universal healthcare (btw much cheaper than private healthcare without the profit motive), reasonable social safety nets and the safeguarding of government and reasonable corporate and personal tax rates – AND is aggressively pro-Israel – hand on my heart I would support them. But they don’t. They don’t give a flying fig.

Beatrix17 says:

Hi Meir: (My grandfather
was a Meyer).

I trust Romney because of
what I see of his character and know of his background. He won’t
articulate solutions until he’s in office because he’s not going to
have all the facts before that.

I don’t have a solution,
(although I have many ideas) but I’ve been around long enough to know
that the Israeli/Palestinian issue should not be the most difficult
on the planet.

I know when people are
negotiating and say, “We have everything resolved except this one
tiny issue,” that they will never resolve that issue. Not ever.
When they are miles apart as the Israelis and Palestinians are, it’s
much easier to get them together. Romney knows that, too.

I resent being called a ‘Communist’ because it’s a lie. A lie perpetrated by GOP supporters – even mainstream. If you are on Social Security, I would honestly reconsider your vote for the GOP and start by asking what a man like Romney thinks of Social Security. He will make your life very, very difficult. He likely thinks that somehow in some way, the fact that you are on Soc Sec is a flaw that resides with you. BUT he will cut taxes for the wealthy, just to make life a bit easier for those people. Think about it. Please. I have wealth and I would GLADLY pay more tax – taxes in the US are lower than EVER! Did you know that?

Beatrix17 says:

Hi Meir:

If the Nazis take over,
unions are destroyed, Communists are imprisoned and Jews are killed.
If Communists take over, business are pillaged, wealthy people are
shot, and religious people are humiliated.

We live in a democratic
society. Obama didn’t destroy the rights’s,achievements, and Romney
isn’t going to take apart the left’s accomplishments. In America, we
try to improve the prior regimes mistakes and build on their
successes. And even at our lowest ebb, Americahas always had
accomplishments or we wouldn’t still be here.

If you compared the voting records of both Romney as Governor, and Obama as Senator and President you’d know which person does and doesn’t support Israel and the Jewish people. It’s time to stop listening to the rhetoric, and look at the facts.

F.Y.I. I’m a conservative Jew shunned, and cursed by liberal Jews.

Are you saying Obama is ‘Pro” Israel? Really? Are you even looking at his actions, words, records, and deeds? Because Obama has never supported Israel! And that is a matter of public record.

Nice of you to ignore the fact that Obama has been proven to be a blatant Anti Semite, and has ‘never’ supported Israel. You want to shoot yourself in the foot? Keep voting for Obama, and like the Jews stupid enough to vote for Hitler; you’ll learn the hard way.

I have too. I’ve been falsely accused of child abuse, been the subject of voter intimidation, been shunned, stalked, Harassed, and ridiculed in public (as well as my kids) because I refuse to vote for who the liberal community demands I do.

And it’s not that bizarre that the liberal Jews really don’t care about the existence of Israel. I call it “Stockholm Syndrome”. The liberal Jews think if they bow low enough to the people who hate them; they’ll suddenly ‘like them’.

Beatrix17 says:

Good News. The GOP supports all of that.

Beatrix17 says:

Obama likes Jews okay,
but he’s a professor and wants to make the history books. Jews are
easy. It’s bringing Muslim nations into the fold that will make him
remembered.

Rose Frank says:

We are to judge people by the fruit in their lives, talk has always been cheap, action speaks louder then words. Romney, has shown he is willing and has put his words and beliefs into action. A character of a man can not be taken unless he is willing to sell it. America has always been the great hope for those who want a chance. If the people in America don’t open their eyes from the complacency that our government has lauded then into. then they will wake up to a new country, and it will be to late. Just as those who lived in Austria back in the late 30′s and 40′s.

William Edwards says:

Jews who claim the republican political philosophy are no better then the Jewish collaborators in 30′s Germany, choosing greed and profit at all costs over ethical treatment of your fellow man, compassion, and integrity. Shame…Shame on you!

I’ve never heard Obama say anything bad about the Jews. His reverend maybe, but certainly not him.

AuntySemantic says:

Oh come on. People are entitled to disagree without being subjected to that kind of crap.

elixelx says:

I’m thinking that you’re thinking that Gaza is 10 times worse than the Warsaw Ghetto; that Israelis are 50 times more cruel than the Gestapo/SS; and that Republican Jews earnestly desire a Holocaust of non-Republicans to end all Holocausts.
Am I mistaken?

elixelx says:

Britain has those too, so do all other members of the European Community.
What have the social policies of one country (Israel) being different from that of your country (America) to do with Ahavat Israel (love of Israel)?
Attitudes to Israel are not the be-all and end-all of the decision about which party to vote for; but for many Jews it should be the one that tips the scales!
BTW. saying that the opinions and attitudes of others is patronising is…PATRONISING! ( having a superior manner; condescending)

elixelx says:

@selfagency:disqus
“I think they’re selfish and ethnocentric and, some, downright evil..”
So completely unlike ANY DEMOCRAT who are, one and all, unselfish,
un-racist, paragons of virtue, who share their wealth with the poor, give largesse wherever they go, don’t evade taxes…etc.
I have a word which will disabuse of these ingenuous opinions….
BARRYJOEHARRYNANCY!

elixelx says:

Isn’t redistribution of wealth a socialist aspiration?
Would you like your (sic) company (GM) to be worker run and government owned, a communist requirement?
Wouldn’t you love it were the government to be the body that mandates health care (Obamacare)? Socialist….
You would be delighted, would you not, were faceless bureaucrats and unelected nomenclature to support their hegemon (Tom Friedman’s authoritarian wet dream; Rahm Emmanuel’s greatest desire; Saul Alinsky’s apotheosis; Barry-boy’s unrequited love) rather than leave Social and economic policy in the hand of cruel, heartless oligarchs…?
Enough of that!
You are a liar, Meir, with an invented background and a faux identity created to better justify your lefty, socialist, communist agenda and support your authoritarian great leader, barry-boy!
From the tone of your post I would say that you are just seeing the first juvenile pimples explode on your face, thaat you are jerking off every opportunity you get, and that you read and watch more porn than you can handle!

elixelx says:

He didn’t mention Japan, China, Russia, England, Mexico….
So, if barry-boy doesn’t mention Israel you will trust Romney more?
What a juvenile fool you are Meir!

elixelx says:

Aunty: What you and I regard as stinking-to-high-heaven crap, people like William Edwards regard as Gospel Truth…
After all, their saviour puts his pants on both legs at once, and doesn’t take them off to take a crap!

It’s typical of left leaning liberals, including Jews, to instantly begin to throw epithets around, and use the word insane, and worse, whenever someone points out some individual facts that they disagree with.
Moveon and their ilk have taken over parts of the Democratic party, while being funded by George Soros.
Incidentally, didn’t it ever occur to you, Meir, if that’s your real name, that the communists and socialists in the United States have nowhere to go but the Democratic party, since the country is a staunch two party system? Do you expect them to support the GOP?
If you do actually have a company, and it’s in hi-tech, then either your bubble has already burst, or if you’ve actually been successful, as you state, then you’re in a minority of entrepreneurs today, since hi-tech is about the only business that is still growing in the US.
Most of the small businessmen/ entrepreneurs today have suffered severely over the past few years, and the situation is worsening from day to day. These businessmen are the bulk of the middle class, which means that the middle class is bearing the brunt of Obama’s policies. ” You didn’t build that ” fits in quite well with the tax and spend administration, and another four years of that will see a more complete downfall of the small business class.

Aside from saber rattling in the general direction of Iran, what different concrete policy or act has Romney proposed that would benefit Israel?

I support Obama not because I’m naive about the threat facing Israel. It’s that, first, I don’t trust Romney. He couldn’t even get the GDP statistics right. Talk is cheap and Israel for him is just a slogan to win the campaign.

Secondly, the USA is not infinitely powerful. America’s power needs to be used judiciously. You saw how they stirred up trouble in Iraq and then they couldn’t wait to get out of there once it didn’t go as planned. If Romney stirs up conflict in the middle east involving Israel and it gets too sticky for Americans, you better beleive that they will be screaming to leave. And guess who will be left alone to pay the price – Israel, who has no choice but to stay there.

Lauren Deutsch says:

I agree that in forums of people with heads on their shoulders, having a diversity of sources of real information (aka facts) is valuable. But today’s political rhetoric is so full of buzz words that have no basis in fact, seeking more to channel opinion rather than to enable thoughtful action.

The discussion has been pressed into binary molds of opposing platforms. This alone will bring us down, as does fear of a common (not necessarily extant) enemy. If we resist polarization, we can find that united purpose that is our birthright. We do not need to be in opposition to flourish.

Lauren Deutsch says:

A vote for Obama can do the same. And we need to secure our existence right here where we live. There are multitudes of the consequences of our actions.

See replies to Meir above. Left leaning liberals like yourself always seem to try to denigrate rather than express ideas. That may well be because you have none, which leaves only the empty intellectual ability to cast stones, epithets, curses, whatever..
Obama is going through that phase now, as he has nothing, nada, zilch that is positive to say about his past 31/2 years in office, so all he can do is try to attack Romney.
His ‘ hope and change ‘ has become ‘ no hope, and change for the worse ‘. Are you better off than you were since Obama took over? If you are, you’re in a rapidly shrinking minority.

Cheaper because we don’t have to spend money on useless things like pain-killer. I’ve heard enough horror stories of people waiting for treatment in Canada or Britain because there are not enough doctors to treat everyone, thank you.

Oh please. Saying that Democrats are Marxist and Communists isn’t an argument or an idea. It’s a blatant attempt to denigrate by using loaded terminology completely divorced from reality. And it is objectively moronic. Furthermore, one can believe that Barack Obama has been a crappy President without also believing that Mitt Romney would be a better President. If you want a bailed out banker in the White House, be my guest, but don’t pretend it’s because the President is a Communist.

You’re obviously afraid to face what the Democratic party – a good percentage of it- has already become, and it will only get worse. Your words, not mine, about the president being a communist. You’re also calling Romney a bailed out banker, which is a complete misnomer, and outright lie. At least try to get some facts straight, if that’s possible, considering the generalizations you’ve been spouting.
Insofar as comparing Obama’s failures to Romney’s potential, I would rather go for ‘ hope and change ‘ by giving Romney the hope that he’ll succeed, and change the economy and the country’s outlook, which is pretty bleak right now. At least he has business accomplishments to his credit, while Obama had no accomplishments of any kind before coming to office.
Check Obama’s meager voting record, and his background, which Hillary Clinton used to mock prior to his taking the nomination. He talks a good game, give him credit for that, once he has a teleprompter in front of him, but the ‘ Nobel ‘ prize winning emperor really has no clothes.

Rolling Stone = National Enquirer with its biased style of reporting.
However, you were right that Romney did negotiate a small bailout, which saved a foundering company.
Bill Bain in the 80′s, who founded the company, put it about $200 million in debt.
Romney was called in to save Bill Bain’s fiasco, and he managed to set the company back on track, part of which included negotiating with the FDIC to repay about 50 cents on the dollar on 30 million owed to the FDIC. This saved the company after Bill Bain almost destroyed it.
Staples is just one one of the products of that emergence, that Romney helped grow, and has since become the world’s largest office supply company. Try reading what the Staples founder and CEO has to say about Romney’s business acumen, and why he supports him for president.

On the other hand, Solyandra just recently has cost the taxpayers some $500 million, with no return.
The GM bailout alone is already well into the billions, with another insert of billions more desperately needed, but it will have to wait until, and if, Obama gets re-elected.

As Obama said to Medvedev, when he thought the microphones were off, that he ” requests that Putin wait until his re-election so that he could be more ‘ flexible ‘ in negotiating a new arms reduction treaty “, so GM and the other bailout companies will have to put their requests on hold for the time being.

I was thinking of voting for Romney until I ran across this little disturbing bit…did you know that they call one of their multiple Gods Elohim?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGFAph3lWqw

Jayson2 says:

Any Jew who supports Romney, a full fledged cult member, should be ashamed.

Yaw Mandy says:

@ Lionel Gaffen: Where did U get your writing skills? I Love it. Keep it up. I have copied most of them for my future argument on FACEBOOK.

Yaw Mandy says:

@
Lionel Gaffen : Always let me know when you post here.

daasebrephotos@gmail.com.

Thanks

Former President Bill Clinton tried to get former senator Ted Kennedy to endorse Hillary Clinton for president in the 2008 election by describing Barack Obama this way: “A few years ago, this guy would have been carrying our bags.”

This anecdote is revealed in a New Yorker article on the relationship between Bill Clinton and Obama:
Tim Russert told me that, according to his sources, Bill Clinton, in an effort to secure an endorsement for Hillary from Ted Kennedy, said to Kennedy, “A few years ago, this guy would have been carrying our bags.”

Clinton is giving a keynote address at the Democratic convention this week in Charlotte, North Carolina.

It’ll be interesting to see what Clinton will have to say, considering the amount of contempt that he has for Obama. Then again, Clinton is a pol, who knows how to play the game.

herbcaen says:

I think Obama will sign a nonaggression pact with Iran if re-elected, just like Stalin did with Hitler. The recent statements by General Dempsey, in which he begs Iran not to bomb US bases confirms my suspicions

“and are anti-science and anti-reason. ”

I am an orthodox Jew with a PhD in molecular biology & genetics (as opposed to the “progressive” LL’s PhD in video games). My oldest son (also Orthodox) is working on his PhD at Hebrew U. in pharmacology / molecular biophysics. My other son (also Ortho) will be entering the Technion this fall to study engineering. My youngest daughter (ditto, married & expecting her first kid and even worse covers her hair (which she also did while serving in the IDF as a married soldier)) is studying economics and statistics at Hebrew U.

And my family is not unique.

And yes, all my kids & kids-in-law served in the IDF (except for one daughter who did national service helping the victims of progressobabbelian inspired Oslo Accords War), the males in combat units.

Since you clearly view yourself as an enlightened “progressive”, who would never stereotype people, do you care to withdraw your ignorant stereotype?

hg
Israel

NOLAkelly says:

I’m a liberal both politically and Jewishly, I want Israel to continue existing, it’s Israel who doesn’t care about my continued existence. It’s not suprising that Orthodox Jews wholeheartedly endorse Israel, Israel will always recognize them as Jews, and welcome them, but that can’t be said about a lot of us. We needed Hillary, there’s a politician who cares about Israel!

I’m not a conservative, but even if I was, I would not vote for Romney. He is not to be believed. Massachusetts residents, of whom I am one, learned this long ago. He’s out for Mitt and Mitt alone. You’re kidding yourself if you go by what he says.

Today we learned that the Democratic Party Platform removed the reference to Jerusalem being the capital of Israel and to any final settlement requiring that Israel have defensible borders. I’m sorry, but when President Obama and his party are officially hostile to one half of the Jewish people’s right to live safely in our historic homeland, Jewish Democrats may want to consider their own shame before casting dispersions on GOP members of The Tribe. (Not that I think Jews of either party should feel “shame” over domestic policy disputes, but look in the mirror, and speak up about those hostile to Jews within your own party)

person63 says:

I’m not a Republican, and am not overly fond of Democrats, either. Our elections are an auction to the highest bidder. The government is controlled by corporations who influence elections and policy. So I guess I’m a radical left-wing frothing at the mouth communist who wants to take away other people’s freedom? I don’t hate anyone, or feel the need to demonize those who may disagree with me. I am actually quite curious about how people arrive at their financially conservative opinions and how those opinions dovetail with Jewish values.

I value a woman’s right to choose whether or not to carry a pregnancy to term, even if I personally am not comfortable with abortion; I believe in equal pay for equal work; I think gay people should be able to marry because it is an issue of equality under the law. I believe in a minimum wage people can afford to live on – $10 an hour is not unreasonable. I also believe businesses should not be allowed to hire workers in other countries, or to take manufacturing out of the U.S, or to dump toxic chemicals.

Everyone should have access to medical care, housing, and a quality public education. Taxes should be raised to fund these programs and services, because everyone benefits. In my family of four, I don’t need more than $50K a year to live comfortably. I would rather pay higher taxes so that I can live in a society where everyone can see a doctor or dentist, where everyone can afford housing, where everyone can go to college, where there are functional roads, bridges, parks, and public libraries, and where everyone can afford food. If government doesn’t serve the needs of the people who live here, what is it good for? We’re not islands.

Even the wealthiest people didn’t get there on their own. By definition, if you’re rich, that means someone else has less, as there are limited resources. Not everyone can be rich. Poor people don’t just magically appear – they appear because someone else owns everything and won’t share. How much does anyone need? The wealthy build their wealth from the labor of others, and have a responsibility to ensure that their workers have a decent quality of life. The wealthy depend equally on infrastructure to conduct their business. No one is “self-made.”

I don’t think the Torah says it’s OK to let people drop dead if they can’t make it. Doesn’t it say leave the corners of your fields for the poor, and pay your workers on time, and be honest in business, and forgive debts after seven years?

Beatrix17 says:

I’m not a conservative either. I’m Independent. Having lived in Massachusetts a million years ago, I can’t understand how Mitt got into office—the state was so liberal. Mass was the only state that voted for McGovern. Maybe both Mitt and Obama are just for themselves, but I’m going with Mitt. I think Mass was right the first time round when they voted him in.

Pam Green says:

I really doubt that Clinton said that to Ted Kennedy. The New Yorker quoting Tim Russert quoting unnamed sources – this is hearsay three times removed.

Pam Green says:

That’s sheer bigotry.

Jayson2 says:

Only when it comes to a cult that professes to being a religion.

Pam Green says:

If Mormonism is a cult, what would you call Islam?

DEKSOFT says:

As a Jewish American who supports Israel and who voted for Obama in 2008 and will vote for him again in November I am disgusted by the way the Prime Minister of Israel seems to be dictating to America how it should behave and what it must publicly state about Iran. America is the world’s only superpower, and Israel is a tiny nation of seven million people. Israel should never be seen as trying to force the President of the United States into a war. If you take the evangelicals out of the equation the overwhelming majority of Americans will be furious if the economy again goes into a tailspin and gas prices reach $5.00 or $6.00 a gallon.

Obama became President after the U.S. was engaged in two wars that have taken the lives of more than 5,000 soldiers, with 40,000 badly wounded, some without legs and arms, some blinded for life, some badly disfigured from bomb blasts. As President he should be doing everything he can to avoid war, despite Netanyahu’s determination to push him into attacking Iran.

Just one last point….Obama has provided Israel with more aid than any other President in history. He has protected Israel at the U.N. every time, and military and intelligence cooperation between Israel and the U.S. is at its highest level in history. Yet, read the hundreds of letters and comments posted every day on Israeli news sites from Maariv, the Jerusalem Post, Yehodiot, and others and you will see hundreds of posts calling Obama a Muslim out to destroy Israel, an anti-semite, and the enemy of Israel. These posters openly, and on a daily basis, call any American Jew who supports Obama a self hater and enemy of Israel.

Frankly, I’ve had enough! I support President Obama and do not feel that in any way, shape or form that he has been anti Israel. I am sickened by the vile, poisonous remarks that I read on Israeli media sites every day about him. He is not the enemy. He is a friend of Israel and just because he does not trust Netanyahu and is not a fan of Netanyahu does not make Obama the enemy. We Jews need to be able to separate what the President has actually been doing to help Israel from the relationship the President may lack with Netanyahu.

We must also remember that Netanyahu does not truly share the President (or the American Jewish community’s opinion either) about a two State solution. Netanyahu is a right wing Prime Minister that is doing everything possible to prevent a true rapproachment between Israel and the Palestinians. Sadly, demographics may one day make a two State solution impossible and Israel will either be an apartheid State or no longer a democracy. Those of us who love Israel should not be accused of disloyalty because we support Barack Obama and a two State solution. The people that are truly harming Israel are those who are calling for war with Iran on a daily basis and those who are undermining everything they can to prevent a just, lasting, and endurable peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

I am definitely not voting for Romney. If people realized some of the kooky stuff he believes they would be frightened.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Ek_jkwGg3I&feature=related

I am definitely not voting for Romney. If people realized some of the kooky stuff he believes they would be frightened.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Ek_jkwGg3I&feature=related

I am definitely not voting for Romney. If people realized some of the kooky stuff he believes they would be frightened.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Ek_jkwGg3I&feature=related

Continued deaf, dumb and blind Jewish support for the Democrats are unmoved by the resounding NO vote at the DNC to consider Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and plead either ignorance or put a spinm on the last 45 months of the Obama administration, the cold shoulder shown to Prime Minister Netanyahu, the failure to enforce sanctions against the mullahs from the beginning of the administration , the abandonment of millions of Iranians demonstrating in the streets of Iran’s cities as well as the recent declarations, obfuscations and euphemisms by White House spokesman Jay Carney to refuse to answer the simple question “What is the capital of Israel?”
The answer would not have required any practical policy regarding the timing of such a move but simply a factual answer which can be provided in any atlas, i.e. the site where Israel’s government carries out its official business and where all foreign diplomats must visit, even their embassy is located in Tel Aviv.
No mention was made that President Obama has never visited Israel and that a simple visit there would have sent a much more powerful message to the Iranian mullahs than abstract warnings about “red lines”. Similarly, the writer did not think it newsworthy to mention that Mitt Romney had just been to Israel including a visit to Jerusalem which he correctly identified as Israel’s capital and that even Russian Prime Minister Putin had visited Israel just a month ago and met with Prime Minister Netanyahu – in the capital!
What could have prevented President Obama from taking 2 days out of his schedule any time in the past year to have made a visit to Israel which would have produced a win-win situation for him, shoring up his support among Jewish voters and a practical warning to prevent the realization of the oft-repeated threat by Ahmadinejad to wipe Israel off the face of the earth?

The 78% figure frequently referred to by Democrat apologists as if it were The Holy Grail, is based primarily on entry or exit polls whereas many Jews are reluctant to identify themselves as conservatives and risk peer pressure. In many synagogues, there are both rabbis and congregants who have a knee-jerk reaction to political issues denigrating conservatives and Republicans as reactionaries or anti-Semites, yet even if the real figure is “only” 70%, it is tragic and signifies the Jewish vote is of little strategic importance in the pocket of one party, a fact that is undeniable and proven beyond a shadow of a doubt in Charlotte.
The fact that the proud Senator Lieberman whose nomination on the Democratic ticket in 2000 caused waves of ecstatic jubilation among many Jews, also refused to support Barack Obama in 2008 and spoke at the Republican National Convention in support Senator John McCain is ignored. Most American Jews continue to be oblivious to the fact that the most outstanding, talented Jewish individuals in public life uniformly saw the obvious dangers of an Obama presidency and warned against: Fox News commentator Charles Krauthammer, former White House Press secretary Arie Fleischer, Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, Joshua Muravchik, columnist and editor of the Weekly Standard Bill Kristol, political analyst and former campaign advisor to President Bill Clinton, Dick Morris, Editor of Frontpage Magazine, David Horowitz, National Review columnist Jonah Goldberg, author of “Liberal Fascism,” Senator Joe Lieberman, author and columnist Dennis Prager, writer Monah Charen, author of “Useful Idiots,” Dianna West, author of “The Death of the Grown-Up,” editor of Commentary Norman Podhoretz, author Hillel Halkin who now resides in Israel, journalist and writer Bernie Goldberg, Ronald Radosh, author (Divided They Fell: The Demise of the Democratic Party, 1964-1996. New York: Free Press, 1996), film producer David Zucker and comedian Jackie Mason
Even those prominent Jews who argued strongly for Barack Obama in 2008, former Mayor of New York City, Ed Koch, the country’s most well-known trial lawyer Alan Dershowitz, Republican congressional candidate Rabbi Shmuely Boteach, and publisher and editor Mortimer Zuckerman, have since removed the Obama stickers from their cars and are now pleading ignorance or betrayal.
The Democrat world-view that still holds an anachronistic strangle hold on many Jews has to be reminded that no ethnic vote is cast in stone, that Jewish support for Republican or Fusion candidates like Jacob Javitz and Fiorello La Guardia turned its back on the corrupt Democratic Tammany political machine in New York in the 1940s and 50s.
Jews, from the time of the first post-Civil War election until 1932 traditionally voted Republican or even Socialist rather than for the party identified in large parts of the country until the 1960s with Sunday “blue laws,” discrimination against blacks, and segregation.
Under Democrat President Wilson, his dismissal of Blacks from federal jobs, apathy to lynching, restrictive immigration policy, attendance at a special festive showing of the racist film ‘Birth of a Nation’ in the White House, sympathy for the Ku Klux Klan and promotion of the notorious sedition laws (‘red scares’) in which thousands of East European and Jewish immigrants were deported and imprisoned for their stand against American entry into the war, caused a revulsion among Jewish voters. In 1920, they threw out two Democrat Jewish congressmen and elected 10 Republicans and two Socialists to Congress.
Even in 1948 it was the Jewish revolt against the Democrats in the Bronx that panicked Democrat strategists to convince Truman to support partition and recognition of a Jewish state. The appearance of the AFL and Progressive Party under former VP Wallace and the strong pro-Zionist program of Republican Governor Dewey threatened a collapse of Jewish identification with the Democrats . Something similar happened in Brooklyn just a year ago where the overwhelmingly Jewish 9th congressional district formerly represented by Anthony Wiener elected a Republican against the Jewish Democrats ! The writing is on the wall – so look out trendy chique Democrats who delight in lampooning Jewish Republicans and hold contests to invent anti Romney jokes in Yiddish!
Many Jewish liberals whose identity had been stamped three generations ago by their grandparents under FDR, continue to picture themselves as enlightened and the true inheritors of the mantle of Jewish concerns for “social justice,” followed Obama wherever he led, rather than view the candidates with an open mind. This election will see the pot boil over for those Jews who need no more evidence. They will have to face up to taking the cure or remain partners in their own demise as an influential and respected community.
It is of course, non-Jews who can most clearly discern this. Whatever exceptional respect Jews have enjoyed has stemmed primarily not from winning Noble Prizes but from the close association in the minds of most American Christians that the Jews imparted much of their high ethical code, moral values and beliefs in the dignity of all people through Christ and the New Testament to all humanity..
It is no accident that Martin Luther King (a life-long Republican and a strong friend of the State of Israel) was animated to appeal to non-violence and the words of the scriptures from the Old Testament to convince his white fellow citizens in the cause of equal rights for his people. What would the Reverend King have done at the DNC in Charlotte were he still alive?

He would have told the nay-sayers that they have rejected their own dearest heritage and that generations of Christian clergymen and statesmen from Disraeli through Sir Winston Churchill and President Harry Truman came to advocate the Zionist cause. Without their help and encouragement there would indeed be no Israel today – “a world without Zionism” as the Iranians would like to contemplate. Israel cannot be undone and not just because of the heritage of the Bible alone.
As early as February 1941 in spite of the wholehearted desire of the American Protestant establishment not to risk involvement in World War II, Reinhold Niebhur spoke out convincingly through the journal he founded “Christianity and Crisis” and sounded a clarion call of warning about Nazism. Its final goals were not simply the eradication of the Jews but the extirpation of Christianity and the abolition of the entire heritage of Christian and humanistic culture.
This is the only kind of “World Without Zionism” that the Iranian and many Arab leaders long for. Niebhur based his views not on any literal “Evangelical” interpretation of Biblical promises but the essentials of justice for the nations and also called for some form of compensation to those Arabs in Palestine who might be displaced if their own leaders refused to make any compromise possible.
Liberal Jews who cannot be dissuaded from their narcotic like support of the Democrats take refuge in spurning Israel to feel comfortable with the “Progressive” camp or recall that their major interest is really in furthering what they think is “social justice”, linking it to the traditional Jewish concern for “Tikkun Olam” (Repair of the World). In this regard they are mistaken and have accepted the contemporary Hollywood ultra-liberal Reform interpretation that Jewish tradition and the Biblical injunctions of the prophets promoted what they think are “progressive” social and economic policies.
As argued cogently by biblical scholars not in the thrall of apologizing for the Democratic Party and author Hillel Halkin in his article “How Not to Repair the World”, the expression “Tikkun Olam” is not the automatic Liberal agenda on social and economic policy so fondly embraced by a majority of the Jewish electorate – including abortion, feminism, pacifism, opposition to gun rights, affirmative action, environmental conservation, etc.
On almost all these issues, observant Jews are fundamentally at odds with the Secular/Liberal Jewish majority. Basically, the thrust of Tikkun Olam is in the opposite direction…“For the Sake of the Public Interest”, rather than “Repairing the World.” It was this concept that was cited by many rabbis in the Middle Ages when they ruled that Jewish communities should not rescue Jewish captives taken by pirates if it meant paying an excessive ransom. To do so would actually encourage more attempts at kidnapping and put the entire community at greater risk.
Indeed, several varying concepts are embraced under the terms “Tikkun Olam” but the predominant one that emerged from the two great failed revolts of Judea against Roman rule in 70 and 135 A.D. that ended Jewish independence for almost two thousand years, was the fundamental need NOT for prophetic utopian visions but the necessity for laws, authority, routines, and organization to prevent future wild and unrealistic messianic fervor.
Likewise, appeals to Jews by Democrats committed to higher and higher taxes for the “common good” ignore the many rabbinic rulings and Old Testament’s definition of charity as a purely voluntary act and that its highest form is from an anonymous donor to an anonymous recipient. Taxation to support the priestly class was the tithe – a flat tax of 10%, NOT a progressive one!
Some prominent American Jews, particularly among those who cannot escape the trance they have inherited as “progressives” and are essentially secular have developed a disassociation from the State of Israel and their religious heritage. They are upset over the close Israeli-American friendship and wish to be absolved from the heinous charge that they once may have actually subscribed to a sense of Jewish solidarity when that meant only solidarity with victimhood – the Jews as eternal martyrs.
For a closer look at misplaced Jewish affection for the Left , see my book The Left is Seldom Right (New English Review Press, 2011)

And thanks to that videotape of him, now we know that his solution is to kick it down the road in hopes that no big escalation occurs.

Beatrix17 says:

You’re right. I was disappointed to discover that he’s a wuss. Back to the drawing board. But I’m going to vote for someone and it might wind up being him.

Wow, you are ok with Obama appointing a known NAZI during Holocaust Rememberance.

You are ok with Obama appointing a known Jew baitor and Israel hater to a cabinet post!

Speaking of you ‘saying’ I’ve never heard Obama ‘say’ anything, he hasn’t condemned it either.

He stayed silent as Antisemitism increased over here, and abroad.

He refused to condemn Gibbs lies …as he compared the Orthodox Jews to the Muslim brotherhood. Btw …about that; how many 7 & 8 year old Jewish kids were ‘executed’ and found in Israel or the USA for violating Jewish law? None.

And yet you continue to defend him. Talk about delusional. Do you really think that if you protect a known Jew hater, that they’ll start to ‘like’ you? The answer is ‘hell no’.

Your response though.. is ‘typical’ of what I expect from a Liberal Jew.

“BTW saying that the opinions ad attitudes of others is ‘patronisng’ is PATRONISING! (having a superior manner; condescendig).”

Bingo.

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