Warren, Booker, Gillibrand — it’s not them — it’s the party. It’s not possible to be on the left today and support Israel. You have to support the “Palestinian” jihad, and turn a blind eye to the savage murder of innocent civilians, including families eating Shabbat dinner and sleeping in their beds. The Democrats: the New Evil Party.
“Elizabeth Warren Comes Out Against Senate’s Anti-BDS Bill,” by David Colon, Gothamist, August 8, 2017:
As debate continues to rage over the Israel Anti-Boycott Act, and one rumored 2020 presidential candidate distances herself from it, another prominent Democrat and rumored presidential candidate has come out against it as well. Senator Elizabeth Warren announced her opposition to the bill this week, calling it a violation of free speech.
Warren, who was never a sponsor of the bill, was asked about it by a constituent at a town hall last night. In response, she said that while she disagreed with BDS, she also said that “outlawing free speech-protected activity violates our basic constitution.”
The bill is an addition to the Export Act of 1979, which criminalized a company knowingly joining the Arab League boycott of Israel. This addition would update the bill to criminalize US companies from joining on to boycotts of US allies called for by intergovernmental organizations such as the United Nations or the European Union. Violations could be punishable by up to $1 million in fines and 20 years in prison.
Besides Warren, other Democratic Senators are feeling the heat regarding the bill as well. Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon was confronted by constituents this past weekend who questioned why he supported the bill. Wyden argues that the bill simply updates the previous 1979 law targeting the Arab League boycott of Israel, and that no one has been imprisoned for violating that.
While supporters of the law like Wyden and Chuck Schumer claim that the bill doesn’t infringe on free speech, a critic of the bill suggests that it still does, even if it doesn’t punish individuals participating in the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement….
“Democrats Who Want to Be President Back Away from Israel,”
by Jonathan S. Tobin, National Review, August 7, 2017:
The shift to the left by Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York demonstrates the power of a party base that is abandoning the Jewish state.
Both were once rock-solid supporters of Israel. But both have other priorities these days — they are thinking about running for president in 2020. Their problem is that no one who plans to compete in future Democratic primaries can ignore the growing power of their party’s left wing, which has grown increasingly hostile to Israel.
The influence of the far left is the only thing that might explain why Booker and Gillibrand are presenting themselves to their party’s base as less than fully supportive of Israel. The context for this development is a sea change in the Democratic party that has been taking shape over the past two decades. Where once the Democrats were the lockstep pro-Israel party and Republicans were divided about backing Israel, the parties’ positions are now reversed. Republicans today are nearly unanimous in their enthusiastic support for the Jewish state, and they oppose all measures that endanger its security. Now it is the Democrats who are split, with polls showing that those who identify with the party are far less likely to back Israel than Republicans are.
The left-wing grass roots of the Democratic party are increasingly hostile to Israel, something that became clear in 2012 when the delegates at the Democratic National Convention revolted against their leadership’s efforts to include in the party platform a recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The delegates booed loudly and rejected the measure in a voice vote while the convention chairman ignored the crowd and declared that the measure had passed. The spectacle was a benchmark moment.
Congressional Democrats also demonstrated the limits of their sympathy for Israel during the debate over the Iran nuclear deal. When President Obama declared that support for the agreement was a litmus test of party loyalty, few Democrats bucked him. Both Gillibrand and Booker supported the deal’s ratification by the backhanded method the administration employed rather than by gaining the support of two-thirds of the Senate – which the Constitution requires for treaties.
In 2016, Democrats growing split over Israel was evident in the Clinton and Sanders campaigns. The candidates disagreed over Israel’s right of self-defense and over support for Palestinian ambitions — one of the few areas where they differed substantively. The Clinton forces were able to quash any potential revolt over the issue, but the presence on the platform committee of Sanders delegates such as Representative Keith Ellison and Cornel West — prominent supporters of anti-Israel measures — was a harbinger of the growing animosity toward Israel….
EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in The Geller Report.