A Word About Last Night’s Election
Bob Turner won. David Weprin lost. The Republican’s victory is being celebrated as a message sent to President Obama. But is this the message we really want to send?
Bob Turner won last night’s special election for Anthony Weiner’s seat in US House of Representatives.
Turner is the first Republican in 90 years who has won it.
He won because Weprin was a spectacularly weak candidate; because some voters were so upset with Weiner’s lies and his bad behavior that they switched parties to vote against him; because ultra-Orthodox and Orthodox Jews, spurred on by rabbis whose actions may have been illegal, voted against Weprin because he voted for same sex marriage in the state assembly; and because a very despicable former mayor urged people to vote against Weprin to send a message to President Barak Obama – we hate your Mideast policies which we see as anti-Israel.
Ed Koch did this despite the fact that Weprin, who is an Orthodox Jew, is very pro-Israel.
And he did it despite the fact that Obama’s intervention had just saved Israeli diplomats in Cairo.
America’s pro-Israel lobby has become an arm of Israel’s rightist parties. No longer do pro-Israel activists look at Israel as a whole and try to represent, as much as possible, the spectrum of legitimate Israeli views.
In fact, they don’t even endeavor to represent the views of the sitting government, opting as often as not to adopt positions to its right.
Ed Koch and his minions sent a message to the President only days after President Obama acted swiftly to save Israeli lives. Prime Minister Netanyahu was thanking the president at the same time Ed Koch was cursing him.
The lesson Obama and other will learn from this is not that his policies are wrong.
What Obma will learn is that many Jews are one issue voters who will abandon someone like David Weprin, who will throw him under the bus, just to try to get their way.
For the most part, Republican don’t oppose Obama’s Middle East policies because they truly differ with them.
For the most part, Republican’s differ with Obama’s policies because they are Obama’s policies – no more, no less.
If Republicans gain control of the Senate and the White House, they take actions that will gut many of the social programs your community relys on. They will do other things that are against the interest of your community.
What will they do about Israel?
They’ll do whatever is pragmatic for them – even if that means adopting the exact same policies put forward by Obama.
Ed Koch told you throwing Weprin under the bus would make you look strong.
But instead, it makes you look like thusgs who no one should ever trust again.
You rode a one trick pony into the ring and you won. But you won’t win next time or the time after that, because everyone knows your trick.
Turner might have won without Ed Koch’s dirty trick and the rabbis’ sleazy attack on Weprin.
The message sent would have been much stronger because it would have been much fairer and more mentchlikeit.
But it wasn’t.
You think you’ve told politicians that you either do what we want on key issues or we’ll walk away from you.
But what you’ve really told them is that you will throw a friend under the bus to get what you want.
And I think that message will hurt Jews for years to come.