Friday, March 22, 2019

2020 Democrats Shunning AIPAC

2020 Democrats Shunning AIPAC
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
March 22, 2019

It seems these days that the Democrat hopefuls for president in 2020 are taking their marching orders from beyond the far left, in the likes of and Code Pink, and shame on them for doing so, as they are squandering an important opportunity.

Both of these fringe leftist operations have petitioned, demanded, and cajoled, to great effect, 16 Democrats to shun the upcoming AIPAC Policy Conference being held in Washington, DC Sunday through Tuesday, March 24-26. AIPAC has been in the news quite a bit lately, thanks to the false accusations leveled by US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN). 

AIPAC - the American Israel Public Affairs Committee - is a 501(c)(4) bi-partisan advocacy organization founded in 1951 promoting strong relations between the United States and Israel. ( Don’t confuse the PAC in AIPAC with a PAC - political action committee, which far too many people do. AIPAC, of which I am a proud member, does not endorse or contribute to political candidates. Some of my most conservative friends are members of AIPAC, as are some of my most liberal friends. AIPAC truly exemplifies what bipartisanship is all about and perhaps Congress could take a few lessons there.

The following Democrats are slated to speak at the AIPAC conference: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), US Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY), and US Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY). While I do not endorse their politics, I applaud them for planning to speak at AIPAC, and for understanding the importance of such an organization - that of furthering a strong and fruitful relationship between the United States and the only democracy in the Middle East, Israel.

On the other hand, the ever growing list of Democrat candidates seeking their party’s nomination, matches the list of those choosing to eschew the upcoming AIPAC Policy Conference. The who’s who of cowards includes:

US Senator Cory Booker - New Jersey
Former South Bend, IN Mayor Pete Buttigieg
Former San Antonio, TX Mayor Julian Castro
Former US Representative John Delaney - Maryland
US Representative Tulsi Gabbard - Hawaii
US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand - New York
US Senator Kamala Harris - California
Former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper
Washington Governor Jay Inslee
US Senator Amy Klobuchar - Minnesota
Former US Representative Robert Francis O’ Rourke - Texas
US Senator Bernie Sanders - Vermont - a Socialist masquerading as a Democrat
Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz - a Democrat masquerading as an Independent
US Senator Elizabeth Warren - Massachusetts
Author Marianne Williamson
Former Tech Executive Andrew Yang

With whom are these recalcitrant Democrats attempting to curry favor? Anti-Israelis? Anti-Semites? Anti-Zionists? The candidates certainly want the financial contributions and votes of the Jewish people. And for decades the Democrat Party and its candidates have taken and still take the votes of the Jewish people for granted. 

What do the these Democrats fear? Do they fear the loss of support from far left organizations such as and Code Pink simply for speaking before a mainstream, politically agnostic organization such as AIPAC? Or is it because AIPAC is a Jewish-themed organization? Or is it because President Donald Trump supports Israel, and has been one of its greatest allies since its founding in 1948?

After all, in addition to moving the United States embassy to Jerusalem after decades and numerous administrations promised, then balked at the notion, President Trump just this week acknowledged and supports Israel’s legitimate claim to the Golan Heights, saying “this is about sovereignty and security.”

“After 52 years it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and Regional Stability!” tweeted Trump.

The Golan Heights, at Israel’s northern border, was captured during the Six-Day War in June 1967 - a war initiated by Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria, culminating in victory by Israel. Israel officially annexed the Golan in 1981.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed his joy in Trump’s support on the Golan. “Trump has made history. He did it again - first Jerusalem,” and then he pulled out of the Iran deal, said Netanyahu. 

Yet, none of this should be relevant, as AIPAC is bi-partisan, and the Democrat candidates should speak at AIPAC because they support the strengthening relations between the United States and Israel. Apparently their hatred of Trump, trumps the alliance between the two countries that will long outlive this administration. Shame on the Democrat candidates for their pettiness. 

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

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