Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Has President Obama Struck Out With Jewish Voters?

The largest group of pro-Israel voters in the U.S. are evangelical Christians, most of whom believe that the Jews have a divine right to a nation in the Holy Land.  For political purposes, one could include Mormons in this group.  The Obama administration does not care one bit about this group because most oppose his policies and traditionally vote Republican.  He wrote this group off long ago.

The second largest group of pro-Israel voters is the Jewish community in the U.S.  This group usually votes Democratic, and supported President Obama in 2008.  Conventional wisdom has always said that Democrats need their vote, especially in the swing state of Florida.  Now recent events seem to indicate that he may have written off Jewish voters too.  In my humble opinion, the Democrats and President Obama have struck out on the issue of Israel.

The first indication was when the Obama administration stated that the international community should not draw any "red lines" restricting Iran's nuclear weapons development.  Yep, they said that.  No red lines, the crossing of which would result in military action to prevent the nation that as said Israel should be "wiped off the map" from obtaining nukes.  Strike One.

The second indication was the 1st draft of the Democratic platform - approved in advance by Obama (as is the case when any president runs for re-election).  All references to God were omitted as was support for Jerusalem being the capital of Israel.  This was in stark contrast to the 2008 platform that contained both.  After an outcry from Christians of all stripes and other religious believers,  President Obama asked that they be reinserted.  A 2/3 vote was required - but it is clear that at best, only 50% of delegates voted for it.  No matter, the chair simply said it got 2/3rds, resulting in even more boos.  Strike Two.

The third indication happened today.  President Obama refused a request from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Nentayahu to meet in the United States this month while Nentayahu is in the U.S. for a UN meeting.  That's right, with Israel in danger of nuclear attack from a mad man in Iran, and time running out to stop it, President Obama has snubbed the Prime Minister of Israel.  How do you think this makes the average Israeli Jew feel about U.S. support?  I bet they are very glad that President Bush approved the sale of the weapons needed for a preemptive attack before he left office - because it appears highly doubtful that President Obama would have done so.  At this point, he seems more interested in distancing America from Israel as this crisis comes to a head - rather than sending signals that he supports the Jewish state.  Strike Three.

That's how I call it - but I am not the umpire, Jewish voters are.  I don't know for sure how they will call it, but I find it ironic that on the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks there is a great deal of doubt if America really stands with Israel while they face a much, much greater threat.  A threat that could kill more Jews than have been killed since the Holocaust.  As they make their call, our Jewish friends should keep in mind President Obama's comment to Putin: "I will have more "flexibility" after the election".

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