Some winners and losers in the 2020 election have already been determined.
Rep. Elliot Engel (NY-16) was defeated in the Democratic primary by a far left progressive Jamaal Bowman during the summer. As such, Engel’s chairmanship of the House Foreign Affairs Committee was lost in that primary as well, and three Democrats are now vying for that role.
The two most pro-Palestinian voices looking to head this important committee as it relates to foreign affairs are Joaquín Castro (D-TX) and Gregory Meeks (D-NY). Both Castro and Meeks boycotted Israeli Prime Minister’s address to a joint session of Congress in 2015 and both voted for the Obama administration’s JCPOA which gave the leading state sponsor of terrorism a legal pathway to nuclear weapons and access to roughly $150 billion.
The third contender, Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) voted against the JCPOA and did not boycott Netanyahu, but has begun to make comments to appeal to the anti-Zionist leanings of a vocal and growing segment of the Democratic Party. That has excited far left groups like Jewish Voice for Peace and J Street.
J Street said that it “welcomes statements from all three candidates to become the next Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.” It highlighted a quote from Castro in-line with J Street’s thinking:
“Israeli settlements violate international law and their expansion is a serious impediment to peace. The Trump administration’s decision to fund investments there breaks decades of bipartisan consensus, undermining America’s ability to be a fair arbiter for a two-state solution.”
The anti-Zionist website Mondoweiss came after Sherman stating “Sherman also called out progressive groups like Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and IfNotNow for supporting Castro’s candidacy, claiming that anti-occupation organizations were building a movement to block him from acquiring the chair.” The site noted that JVP prefers Castro among the three contenders.
J Street, an influential anti-“settlement” organization, lobbied hard for the Obama administration to support the Iranian nuclear deal as well as allowing the passage of UN Resolution 2334, which made it an international crime for Israelis to live east of the invisible 1949 Armistice Lines. The Democratic Party has only lurched further left and anti-Israel since that passage in 2016.
Should Joe Biden win the presidency and Joaquín Castro become chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the next two years promise to be the most anti-Israel in American history, much to the joy and lobbying of far left groups like IfNotNow, JVP and J Street.
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