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May 5, 2016 / 27 Nisan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Ted Cruz’

Supporting Trump Should Be A No-Brainer For Jews

Thursday, April 14th, 2016

In 1980, New York City decided to renovate Central Park’s ice skating rink. The cost of the two-year project was estimated at $9 million. Six years and $13 million later, the renovations were nowhere near complete. Enter Donald Trump. He asked then-Mayor Ed Koch if he could take over the job. Six months later the rink was ready.

Trump is a man who gets things done. He is a man who strives for excellence. He is a man who before 9/11 wanted to build the tallest building in the world. Ivanka Trump recalls that her father used to tell her as a child, “You’re going to be thinking anyway. Might as well think big.” In short, Trump is a man who values greatness and seeks the same for his country.

Trump’s critics pounce on his every mistake over a business career of 50 years. But they’re ignoring the larger picture: Trump is a multi-billionaire with flourishing enterprises all over the world. To conclude that Trump is a terrible businessman because not all his endeavors succeed is like concluding that Benjamin Cardozo was a terrible lawyer because he occasionally lost a case. Both inferences are sheer lunacy.

Trump’s critics also like to attack him for being unhinged. But think for a moment: Can anyone succeed in Manhattan’s real estate market – with all its regulations and zoning laws – by being unhinged? By embracing an attitude of “my way or the highway”?

In fact, those who know Trump best testify that he is a “reflective, gentlemanly, decent” man (in the words of longtime friend Rudy Giuliani). When Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi was asked why she supports Trump for president, she said, “I see a different Donald Trump, I think, than a lot of people see. I see the way he interacts with his kids…. He’s a great dad. His employees adore him. I think they would jump off a cliff for him, and I think that’s speaks a lot about a person.”

Indeed, it does. As do Trump’s numerous quiet acts of kindness over the decades. Just two weeks ago, for example, a former Miss Wisconsin tearfully recounted the moment she received a handwritten note from Trump as she lay in a hospital bed fighting for her life. “He is the kindest man I have ever met,” she told FOX News. “I think he has a heart of gold.”

What about Ted Cruz’s reputation? In a word, it’s terrible. He helped win the White House for George W. Bush in 2001, but virtually everyone on the campaign team – including Bush – “couldn’t stand him,” a prominent Bush aide recalls. “People wouldn’t go to a meeting if they knew he would be there,” he said.

Cruz’s freshman roommate at Princeton University remembers him as “a nightmare of a human being.” Another Princeton acquaintance remembers him as an “arrogant jerk.” Yet another remembers Cruz speaking to her in such a “vicious” supercilious fashion that she literally broke down in tears.

Cruz’s reputation in Congress isn’t much better: “Everybody who knows him in the Senate hates him. And I think hate is not an exaggeration,” political pundit Charles Krauthammer recently said.

Is character everything? No. But when so many colleagues and acquaintances find you – not your ideas – detestable, something is wrong.

How do the candidates rate on policy? Cruz isn’t bad, but Trump approaches problems with a certain clarity and straightforwardness that Cruz simply doesn’t possess. Thus, while Cruz hems and haws about water-boarding terrorists, Trump approvingly repeats the story of General “Black Jack” Pershing allegedly executing 49 Muslim terrorists in the Philippines with bullets dipped in pig’s blood. He also dares suggest that allowing hundreds of thousands of Muslims into this country at a time of worldwide jihad may – just may – not be wise.

This straightforward thinking – unmarred by the obfuscations of politically correctness – will likely benefit Israel too. For the question isn’t whether this or that candidate likes Israel. The real question is: What will the next president say when Saudi Arabia threatens to desolve its friendship with the U.S. if it doesn’t pressure Israel into making concessions? For that is precisely the threat made to George W. Bush, as Elliott Abrams recounts in his book Tested by Zion. As a result, Bush – who was about as instinctively pro-Israel as they come – supported a Palestinian state, condemned Israel’s anti-terror campaign in the West Bank, and pushed for negotiations with the Palestinians. Why should we believe Cruz will act any differently?

Trump, however, might. As a non-politician, he harbors no instinctive reaction to cave to Saudi Arabia. Indeed, he has publicly attacked the oil-rich country. It’s true that two months ago Trump talked of acting neutral while negotiating a Middle East peace deal – a deal Netanyahu has publicly begged for, incidentally – but since then he has stated several times that a peace deal is impossible unless the Palestinians stop teaching their children to kill Jews.

And Trump doesn’t play games. He isn’t a politician. He is a businessman who has made a career out of reading people. If he perceives that the Palestinians are inveterate liars – which they are when it comes to making peace with Israel – he will walk. Will Cruz?

Judaism teaches us not to put faith in any human being. God runs the world, not man. But when I look at Cruz and Trump, I see a politician on one side (have you ever heard Cruz utter a natural-sounding sentence?) and, a smart, clear-thinking, politically-incorrect patriot with an enormously successful business career on the other side. To me, the choice is a no-brainer.

Elliot Resnick

Cruz Does His Best to Woo GOP Jews in Las Vegas

Monday, April 11th, 2016

GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz had the audience all to himself Saturday, and he took the opportunity to warn Jewish Republicans about the dangers of voting for Donald Trump.

He told his audience that such a vote would be an “absolute disaster” for the GOP, “for conservatives and for the country.”

There were about 500 people at the weekend gathering in Las Vegas of the Republican Jewish Coalition, most of whom were still pretty neutral. The “can’t miss” Republican event is held at the hotel resort of billionaire casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, the top political spender in the last political race.

“All three candidates were invited to attend our group today, but Sen. Cruz was the only one to accept our invitation,” said RJC board member Michael Epstein as the crowd applauded.

Trump and Kasich were both in New York, gearing up for the April 19 primary election.

“Many are scared by the concept of Donald Trump and the presidency,” Republican Jewish attorney Charlie Spies, a former supporter of Jeb Bush, told the Daily Mail. “No American politician should be compared to Hitler because of the unique, horrific nature of the Nazi genocide. Having said that, there is an issue of tone and being able to whip up crowds, often directed at segments of society that get scapegoated. Anybody who has studied history would be concerned watching that.”

Of the three Republican candidates who remain, Ohio Governor John Kasich is the overwhelming favorite among registered Jewish voters, according to a poll commissioned by the Republican Jewish Coalition and shared privately this weekend with board members. Cruz falls in the middle.

The Texas senator won the recent primary in Wisconsin and in Colorado on Saturday, and is working now to consolidate those Republican donors who are most opposed to a Trump candidacy. Cruz will still have to work hard to transform those donors from anti-Trump to pro-Cruz voters; he still has to neutralize a threat from Kasich, whose presence could split a vote and destroy Cruz’s chance to overcome Trump’s lead, if nothing more.

In New York he may have a better chance to make a dent in Trump’s popularity edge that one might realize.

“Cruz has been reaching out to that community for a long time,” Nathan Diament, executive director of the Orthodox Union Advocacy Center told CNN this weekend.

Cruz appeals to the strictly observant Jewish community, Diament said, in part due to his Senatorial record of support for Israel, his school choice advocacy and his relentless insistence on the need to defend religious liberty protections on the campaign trail.

“Orthodox Jewry is a sort of values-based community and Cruz certainly presents himself like a values-based person … And he uses language that resonates with people of faith, so there’s a connection there,” Diament said. A more important point — unlike Trump, Cruz also has a real track record to refer to, he noted.

Hana Levi Julian

American Muslims Speak Out Against ISIS as GOP’s Ted Cruz Calls For Surveillance on Muslims

Sunday, March 27th, 2016

Muslim leaders are starting to speak out against Da’esh (ISIS) terrorism, over fears the backlash will hit their communities instead.

It’s not an unrealistic fear. After the “9/11″ Al Qaeda attacks on America on September 11, 2001, Americans looked at their Muslim neighbors quite differently. Law enforcement also became more aware of the prevalence of radical Islam, how it is spread and where it appears.

One of the biggest populations of Somali Muslim immigrants lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Somali American attorney Aman Obsiye told Reuters that he was, for the first time in his life, “fearful to be a Muslim in America.”

The Brussels attacks last week by Da’esh (ISIS) terrorists prompted a meeting between the city’s Muslim leaders and law enforcement officials, who said they would protect the community against hate crimes.

“I’m not a terrorist,” said Somali American Asthma Jama. “I’m an American citizen. I want to live in peace, just like everybody else.”

Political rhetoric from Republican candidates like Donald Trump and Ted Cruz has been cited by Muslim leaders as being particularly “scary.” They also say that rhetoric is being used as ammunition by terrorist groups in propaganda videos, “big time.”

But not all Muslim leaders think that’s bad. When GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz called for law enforcement last week to increase police presence in Muslim neighborhoods in the wake of the Brussels attacks, at least one Muslim activist agreed.

“We need to empower law enforcement to patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods before they become radicalized,” Cruz said, adding there was no room for “political correctness” in the current environment.

Dr. Zudi Jasser, president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD), and a former U.S. Navy Lieutenant-Commander, defended Cruz’s stance. In an interview on Fox News last Thursday, Jasser said Cruz was right to encourage law enforce to take a more proactive role in Muslim neighborhoods to prevent radical Islamic terrorism.

“I can’t believe we’re having this conversation a few days after you had a cell that was operating four months apart… were being holed up by an organism of a community that was holding them away from the entire security apparatus of the European Union,” he said. “And yet we’re standing back and saying, ‘We shouldn’t be monitoring communities?’

“I’m not ready to give up any of my civil rights. All I’m saying is that as an American Muslim we patriotically want to help our community, help our country be safe,” Jasser said.

“We want to engage and embrace police, Homeland Security and if we’re going to engage them we need to welcome them into our community and into our mosques — not for illegal wiretaps but rather for engagement and relationship building.”

Cruz said his plan was similar to that used police to raise law enforcement presence in neighborhoods with known gang activity. “I’m talking about any area where there is a higher incidence of radical Islamic terrorism,” he told CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

He also referred to the successful terror prevention program implemented in New York City under the administration of former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, involving surveillance of Muslim and other communities. That program faced a lawsuit in 2014, but the case was dismissed by a federal judge, who ruled the program did not discriminate against Muslims.

That program was nevertheless immediately dismantled under the current administration of Mayor Bill DeBlasio.

NYPD communications director J. Peter Donald tweeted in response, “Hey @tedcruz are our nearly 1K Muslim officers a “threat” too? It’s hard to imagine a more incendiary, foolish statement.”

Cruz later clarified that his plan “does not mean targeting Muslims. It means targeting radical Islamic terrorism,” he told CNN. “I am talking about any area where there is a higher incidence of radical Islamic terrorism.”

Hana Levi Julian

Cruz at AIPAC: ‘Peace Through Strength’ [video]

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz (R) spoke to AIPAC’s policy conference on Monday evening, March 21. He followed a raucous presentation by Donald Cruz, and one given earlier in the day by Hillary Clinton.

Cruz started his talk by correcting without naming Donald Trump. He said, “Let me say at the outset, perhaps to the surprise of the previous speaker, Palestine has not existed since 1948.” Point Cruz.

He continued by invoking the story of Purim, mentioning that Jews the world over will soon be reading the Megillah (Esther). He recounted that the evil Persian Haman described the Jews as “scattered and spread out.” The Talmud teaches us, Cruz explained, that when the forces for good are divided, evil can prevail. But when forces for good come together in unity, they can defeat tyrants. Do you see where this is going?

Cruz likened the time of Haman to the time in which we live. But he promised a near future in which Americans will come together,  within the Republican party and across America.

Aware that he has a reputation as a divisive personality, Cruz hit hard on that issue of unity, unity within America and then, after November, between America and Israel. “America will stand with Israel and defeat radical Islamic terrorists,” Cruz told the crowd.

He also mentioned that his colleague, Senator Lindsey Graham, had hosted an event for him earlier in the day, “which should allay the doubts of anyone here that the god of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob can still do miracles,” eliciting a big guffaw.

As did both Clinton and Trump, Cruz mentioned the brutal murder of American Christian Taylor Force who was recently stabbed to death in Jaffa by a Palestinian Arab terrorist. Force was from Lubbock, Texas, so it was no surprise that Cruz mentioned him.

He used the tragedy to remind the audience that America and Israel are in the fight together against radical Islam. Sadly, not one of the candidates mentioned another American recently murdered in Israel, Ezra Schwartz. Schwartz was a Jewish teenager from Boston.

In his four years in the Senate, Cruz has initiated efforts to support Israel in various ways, and he mentioned several of them during his speech on Monday. One, a critical effort, was when he stood up to the U.S. State Department when it shut down Ben Gurion Airport during Operation Cast Lead, after a rocket from Gaza landed – harmlessly – a mile away.

Cruz had immediately called on the U.S. government to explain why it had imposed what he called an economic boycott on Israel, pointing out that the U.S. had not shut down the airspace in other hot war zones such as Pakistan, Afghanistan or even in the Ukraine, where a passenger airline had just been shot down by Russia.

When Cruz demanded that the Obama administration answer the question, the response he got was that his suggestion was ridiculous. Cruz then informed them that he would shut down every nomination to the State Dept. until it answered his question.

The closure of Israeli airspace was lifted within 36 hours, thanks at least in part to the action taken by Cruz.

Cruz pointed out that on one of his three trips to Israel, he visited a hospital in the north, where “Israel has treated more than a thousand Syrians, free of charge.”

He quoted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: “Israelis use missile defense system to protect our citizens, while Hamas uses its citizens to protect its missiles to launch into his one mention of Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton. Clinton had sought to justify Hamas keeping its missiles in schools and hospitals by explaining that Gaza is very small and crowded.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

A Bronx Cheer for Hillary’s AIPAC Speech

Monday, March 21st, 2016

At least one American Jewish organization gave presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee the thumbs down. Although the audience applauded, Clinton’s ideas were retreads of tried and failed policies.

Clnton spoke during the day, on Monday, March 21 to AIPAC’s policy conference in Washington, D.C. Clinton is the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for President.

The Republican frontrunner, Donald Trump, is scheduled to speak during the late afternoon, early evening session, along with the other two candidates for the Republican nomination. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz  is speaking at 6:50 p.m. ET and Ohio Gov. John Kasich will also speak. Neither Trump nor Kasich had the AIPAC speech listed on their website campaign schedules.

The other Democrat running for the party nomination, Bernie Sanders, chose to skip the AIPAC event. That decision was sure to endear him to the many dozens of thugs, including Max Blumenthal – the son of Hillary Clinton’s long-time buddy and Israel policy adviser Sidney Blumenthal – protesting against Israel outside the convention center where the AIPAC policy conference is taking place.

Although Clinton was warmly received, the points she focused on as positives are hardly new, innovative or suggest a smooth road ahead for Israel should Clinton win the general election.

Clinton does not seem to realize that the Israeli people and a majority of the Israeli political spectrum has tired of the unending efforts to twist Israel’s arm to sit at the negotiating table with a Palestinian Arab leadership that rejects any movement forward, that only increases its demands, and that does so while glorifying the barbaric murder and maiming of Israelis.

Instead, Clinton proudly recounted her efforts to bring Israeli and Palestinian Arab leaders to the negotiation table.

She also appeared to be tone deaf to the widespread anger and dismay by nearly all Israelis and even nearly all mainstream Jewish and other pro-Israel organizations – including AIPAC – to the Nuclear Iran Deal.

She strongly defended the Iran deal, declaring that it has made “the United States, Israel and the world safer.”

One strong note she sang was a promise to rebuff efforts by outsiders – she said the United Nations, it is doubtful she also means the United States – to impose a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian Arab conflict.

The only victim of terrorism whom Clinton mentioned by name was Taylor Force, an American Christian who was stabbed to death earlier this month by a Palestinian Arab terrorist at the Jaffa port.

While there has been an enormous outpouring of grief by Israel and Israelis over Force’s murder, it would have been a reasonable gesture for Clinton to have also mentioned Ezra Schwartz, an American Jewish teenager who was murdered by a Palestinian Arab terrorist just months ago.

When Clinton mentioned Force, she used it to make a strong point, one for which she received huge applause and a standing ovation.

What she said was that the “attacks must end immediately and — Palestinian leaders need to stop inciting violence, stop celebrating terrorists as martyrs and stop paying rewards to their families!” But Clinton made no effort during her tenure as Secretary of State to cut off aid to the Palestinian Authority which pays those rewards.

Although Clinton’s speech received generous applause, at least one Jewish group had little positive to say about it. In particular, the RJC noted that during Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State, the relationship between Israel and the U.S. reached its lowest point.

This is the statement put out by the RJC’s executive director Matt Brooks:

Hillary Clinton’s rhetoric rings hollow. Actions speak louder than words and Hillary’s words can do little to paper over her disastrous tenure as Secretary of State. Under Secretary Clinton, the US-Israel relationship reached its lowest point and she supported the United States-brokered, ill-conceived and disastrous nuclear deal with Iran. At every turn when her actions could achieve real results and speak louder than words, Secretary of State Clinton chose instead to sit and do nothing. Pro-Israel voters have learned from painful experience that there is a difference between political speeches and governing priorities. Hillary Clinton has proven time and again that talk is cheap, and today was no different.

The National Jewish Democratic Council did not issue a statement either about Clinton’s AIPAC speech or about the AIPAC policy conference. The only statement of support by the NJDC for any of this year’s presidential contenders was one issued in February, praising Martin O’Malley, as a “true friend to the American Jewish community.” O’Malley suspended his campaign in February.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Primary Results for March 8

Wednesday, March 9th, 2016

There were four races on Tuesday, March 8. A Republican caucus in Hawaii, a Republican primary in Idaho, a primary in Michigan and a primary in Mississippi.

MICHIGAN: Donald Trump won the Republican primary in Michigan. Ohio Gov. John Kasich came in second amongst the Republicans, with Tex. Sen. Ted Cruz close on his heels. Trump took 21 delegates, Kasich 15 and Cruz took 12. The race was called for Sanders who bested Clinton by about two percentage points.

MISSISSIPPI: Hillary Clinton is the winner for the Democrats and Donald Trump has won amongst the Republicans. Clinton trounced Sanders and took home 26 delegates, with Sanders taking only one. Trump was about eleven points ahead of Cruz who was almost 30 points ahead of Kasich, with Rubio trailing far behind.

HAWAII: Donald Trump came in first in Hawaii with 42.4 percent of the vote, which gave him 10 more delegates. Cruz came in second with 32.7 percent of the vote and six more delegates.

IDAHO: Texas Sen. Ted Cruz came in first with 45.4 percent of the vote and Donald Trump came in second with 28.1 percent of the vote. Cruz picked up 20 delegates with his win and Trump 12 for the votes he collected.

Following the March 8 contests, the delegates (including super delegates) count is: For the Democrats, Clinton 1,221, Sanders 571. For the Republicans, Trump 458, Cruz 359, Rubio 151, Kasich 54       

COMING UP NEXT

MARCH 12, 2016

D.C. Republican convention

Northern Mariana Islands Democratic Convention

Wyoming Republican Convention

March 15, 2016

Florida (winner take all)

Illinois

Missouri

North Carolina

Ohio (winner take all)

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Sanders, Cruz on Top in Maine, Trump, Clinton in Louisiana

Monday, March 7th, 2016

The American public continued over the weekend to dole out the wins to several contenders, but Donald Trump is still in the lead by a substantial amount for the Republicans and Hillary Clinton for the Democrats.

Starting with a win by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders in Nebraska on Friday, Trump triumphed in Kansas and Louisiana on Saturday, with Clinton besting Sanders in the Pelican State.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz came in first amongst the Republicans in Maine and Sanders did the same for the Democrats. On Sunday, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio beat the Republican pack for a win in Puerto Rico.

Now all eyes turn to Michigan, Hawaii (Republicans only), Idaho (Republicans only), Mississippi and Illinois for the next races which will take place on Tuesday, March 8.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/sanders-cruz-on-top-in-maine-trump-clinton-in-louisiana/2016/03/07/

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