Support for Israel trumps everything: GOP election deniers and their Dem critics both find support from AIPAC

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s (AIPAC) new super PAC committee has released a list of over 100 candidates that it’s backing in this year’s midterm elections. 37 of them voted to overturn the 2020 presidential election in which Joe Biden beat Donald Trump.

AIPAC also endorsed dozens of Democrats and some of those lawmakers harshly criticized their Republican colleagues for rejecting Biden’s decisive win. Now they’re all receiving support from the same lobbying group.

AIPAC’s support for this group of GOP lawmakers has been criticized by multiple pro-Israel organizations, including a number of political lobbying groups. “AIPAC’s support for these candidates endangers American democracy and undermines the true interests and values of millions of American Jews and pro-Israel Americans who they often claim to represent,” said Laura Birnbaum, National Political Director for the liberal Zionist group J Street. “Whatever their views on Israel, elected officials who threaten the very future of our country should be completely beyond the pale. We call on AIPAC to immediately end their support for these candidates – or explain what could possibly justify supporting those who effectively sided with the insurrectionists on January 6th.”

“Sad mistake!,” tweeted former Anti-Defamation League head Abe Foxman, “Israel’s security depends on America being a strong democracy . Those who undermine America’s democracy undermine America and a weak America will not be able to stand and support its ally Israel.”

AIPAC has defended their decision by pointing out they’re a “single-issue organization” committed to “building bipartisan support.”

The endorsements aren’t exactly surprising. Trump was warmly welcomed at AIPAC’s annual policy conference after being elected in 2016. “AIPAC doesn’t simply prioritize above all else devotion to right-wing views on Israel,” wrote Foundation for Middle East Peace’s Lara Friedman at HuffPost at the time. “AIPAC takes all other priorities off the table. It embodies a worldview hostile toward the Palestinians, antagonistic to peacemaking, and sympathetic to policies and positions that are antithetical to a two-state solution. This worldview, by necessity, ignores or even denigrates the Jewish values held dear by most American Jews – values that animate our views not only on Israel-Palestine, but on immigration, healthcare, and the full gamut of social issues at play in every election.”

“Based on this worldview, it should surprise no one that the AIPAC crowd warmly embraced Trump,” she continued. “The crowd was doing what AIPAC has trained its supporters to do: view the candidate strictly through the lens of what AIPAC defines as acceptably ‘pro-Israel.’ And through this lens, Trump looked great.”

Some of the election deniers harshest Democratic critics are now linked to them via the AIPAC PAC. After organizers of the January 6th insurrection said they had participated in planning meets with GOP lawmakers and Trump staff, Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY) tweeted, “A cabal of Republicans not only incited but also aided and abetted the insurrection against the US Capitol during the electoral college vote count. There’s no place for insurrectionists in the US Congress. Expel any and all accomplices.”

The staunchly pro-Israel Torres has been endorsed by the political action committee.

Another endorsee, Grace Meng (D-NY), shared similar sentiments at the time. This makes me 🤬 nauseous,” she tweeted. “I’m disgusted that i have to call some of these people colleagues.”

Rep. Norma Torres (D-CA), also backed by AIPAC, declared that Republicans involved in the insurrection had violated their oath of office. “Every member of Congress takes an oath to defend our Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic,” she wrote. “Any member who helped plan or was complicit in the Jan. 6 insurrection violated that oath, and should be immediately removed from office.”

The most striking member of congress to be backed by the PAC might be Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), a lawmaker so connected to January 6th that he’s been asked to testify about the event before congress. Records obtained by CNN last month showed that Jordan had spoken with former President Trump the morning of the insurrection. Jordan has refused to testify and referred to the investigation as a “Democrat obsession.”

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