Jewish Groups, Politicians Respond to Romney Running Mate Pick
The National Jewish Democratic Jewish Council (NJDC) and The Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) released competing statements on Romney’s choice on Saturday. The NJDC said it was alarmed by Romney’s choice of Ryan, while the RJC applauded Romney’s choice.
NJDC President and CEO David Harris said Romney’s selection of Ryan was “the clearest indication yet that Romney does not reflect the values of most American Jews.” He took aim at Ryan’s domestic record, saying that many in the Jewish community had opposed “The Ryan Plan”, Congressman Ryan’s 2012 budget proposal.
Harris called the Ryan plan “dangerous” and said that it had drawn “profound concern and even ire” from many members of the Jewish community, because of its “plans to end Medicare as we know it” and to end “vital social safety net programs.” Harris also said that the Ryan plan would have placed an increased burden on the elderly, poor and middle class if it had been adopted.
Yet RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks defended Ryan’s record, saying, “Paul Ryan has challenged both party leaderships in Washington to face up to growing fiscal problems that threaten to blight our nation’s future.” Brooks said that while Republicans had come up with a plan to address the nation’s financial crisis, “Democrats have ducked responsibility.” He said that the senate, which is currently controlled by the Democrats, “hasn’t passed a budget since 2009.”
Brooks also praised Ryan’s support of Israel, saying, “We are pleased that by picking Paul Ryan, Gov. Romney has opted for a running mate who has a record Israel’s Ambassador to the U.S., Michael Oren, has already praised as ‘very supportive’ of the Jewish state.”
He further said that Ryan had gained the appreciation of pro-Israel voters by “rejecting the Obama administration’s tactic of pressuring Israel to make concessions its leaders believe will undermine its security.”
Brooks also praised Ryan for his stance on peace between Israel and the Palestinians, saying that Ryan had insisted that “a rejection of violence and incitement on the Palestinian side is an essential precondition for a meaningful peace agreement.”
Romney’s choice of Ryan also drew praise from Brooklyn City Councilman and State Senate Candidate Simcha Felder (D-NY). According to Colin Campbell of The New York Observer’s Politicker, Felder called Ryan, “a terrific pick for Vice President” and praised the candidate’s knowledge of fiscal policy. According to Campbell, Felder also praised Ryan’s support of Israel, saying, “His addition to the ticket will help put America back to work and keep The United States and Israel safe.”
Yet, according to The Miami Herald, Ryan drew criticism from U.S. Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), who said that Ryan had “seriously flawed ideas for our economy that have only failed us in the past.” According to The Herald, she warned that if Romney and Ryan were elected, they would cut “education, job creating initiatives and Medicare.”
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About the Author: Miranda has a B.A. in political science and has worked over a decade as a news reporter, financial news writer and political blogger. More about Miranda