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December 10, 2016 / 10 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Vice President’

Friend of Israel Slated to Become HRC’s WH Chief of Staff

Thursday, October 27th, 2016

Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta is the top choice to serve as White House chief of staff come January 2017, Politico reported Thursday. The choice of chief of staff will signal the presidential candidate’s expectations of her relationship with Congress, as well as her international plans.

A close Clinton ally told Politico that, on the campaign, Podesta was part of a small group of advisers the candidate “can already shorthand with.” Expectations are that should he agree to serve, it would be only for one year. “The question is can she convince him to do it for a year,” the source said, adding, “He could get the administration stabilized, and get hiring done.”

Podesta served as President Clinton’s Chief of Staff from 1998 until the end of Clinton’s time in office in January 2001.

As reflected from the thousands of his emails dumped by Wikileaks, Podesta is a great advocate of transparency, and has frequently criticized Hillary Clinton’s tendency for secrecy and cover-ups. In a 2004 speech at Princeton University, he condemned what he called the U.S. “excessive government secrecy” and “bloated secrecy bureaucracy.” He supported President Clinton’s Executive Order 12958 which helped declassify 800 million pages from the U.S. diplomatic and national security history. He called Executive Order 12958 “perhaps the biggest accomplishment of the Clinton administration.”

Podesta and Jake Sullivan, Clinton’s likely appointment for National Security Advisor (he is currently serving as Vice President Biden’s NSA), are considered friends of Israel, a fact supported by countless leaked emails. Podesta and Sullivan come across in these emails as associates of the pro-Israel circle of Hillary Clinton advisors, some of whom have been on close personal terms with Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer. Dermer used their good services to communicate a message from Prime Minister Netanyahu to the presidential candidate, asking her to curb her enthusiasm in support of Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran.

One particular leaked email exchange, between John Podesta and his daughter, Megan Rouse, offers an un-staged insight into the former’s stand on US-Israel relations. Rouse wrote her father: “I’ve heard a concern from some folks who care deeply about Israel that Hillary will be the president ‘most unfriendly to Israel in our history, worse than Obama.’ Thoughts on how I might respond in conversation?”

Podesta replied: “That’s a bit crazy. Obama developed a real feud with Bibi, but she has been a staunch defender of Israel since her Senate days. Probably her very best supporters are Haim Saban, and Danny Abraham who would not be with her if she wasn’t totally committed to Israeli security.”

Incidentally, Podesta would much rather serve in Hillary Clinton’s cabinet as energy secretary, and was behind President Obama’s climate initiatives. The problem is that getting the job would require Senate confirmation, a road paved with months and months of hearings on those nasty Wikileak emails bearing his name and address. Apparently, not all of them were as sweet as his exchange with Megan…

JNi.Media

Wasserman Schultz Defeats Sanders’ Candidate in Florida Primary

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016

In a snub to Bernie Sanders’ supporters who are enraged at the fact that leaked emails showed how then DNC Chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) advised their man’s opponent Hillary Clinton on how to best win the nomination, the Congresswoman’s Miami-area district voters rebuffed her primary challenger who enjoyed the financial and campaign support of Bernie Sanders. With 81 percent of the vote counted, Wasserman Schultz had 57 percent to her challenger Tim Canova’s 42 percent, according to the AP.

Hillary Clinton won the same district by just under 40 points in the Florida presidential primary. Besides Clinton’s endorsement, Wasserman Schultz received the support of President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

It should be noted that besides fighting Sanders for the nomination, Wasserman Schultz had a lot to do with quashing the Senator’s efforts to turn the DNC platform into an all out attack on the Israeli “occupation.” Sanders picked James Zogby, a long-time pro-Palestinian activist, and Cornel West, a racial justice activist, to be his representatives on the Democratic party’s platform committee. The 15-member platform committee included six Clinton-picked members, five for Sanders, and four for Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the chairwoman. If not for the latter’s strong influence on the proceedings and her commitment to Israel, there could have been a platform agenda item condemning Israel.

The six-term congresswoman Wasserman Schultz was forced to leave her DNC post as a gesture to Sanders’ voters, and her own primary campaign this summer had been a fight for those same progressive voters in her district. Sanders did a lot, save for an actual personal appearance (Canova admitted he was disappointed), against the Florida Congresswoman, and his support for Canova boosted his national profile and helped him raise more than $3.5 million with small donations averaging $22 each. Wasserman Schultz only raised $3.4 million.

Wasserman Schultz faces a Republican challenger in November, but no one doubts her chances of winning Florida’s 23rd district.

JNi.Media

Biden Reveals US Going Out of Its Way to Extradite Erdogan’s Archenemy

Thursday, August 25th, 2016

Turkish rage at the US has been mounting since the failed July 15 coup, which President Erdogan blamed on his former ally Fethullah Gulen, a self-exiled cleric living in Pennsylvania. It has gotten so bad, President Obama sent his VP to smooth things over, and the Turks were not making the task easy for Joe Biden. The Turks began by sending Ankara’s deputy mayor to greet Biden—the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit Turkey since the coup—at the airport. And while the VP was still visiting, the pro-Erdogan Daily Sabah stated: “Biden wasted a trip, Turkey wasted time.”

But Joe Biden, no stranger to hardball politics, took all of that in stride and stayed on message. For one thing, as Anadolu reported Wednesday, Biden hinted that Obama may be prepared to throw Gulen under the bus. “I can understand Mr. President how some of your countrymen would feel that the world didn’t respond rapidly enough to the existential crisis your country is facing,” the VP said at a joint press conference in Ankara Wednesday. “That’s why I want to personally be here. And I was asked by the president to personally be here to represent him, to tell you and all of your colleagues and your countryman how very, very sorry I am, the president and the American people are for the suffering and loss you have endured.”

Biden then said the US is “committed to doing everything we can to help bring justice for all those responsible for this coup attempt. Even as [we] speak, our American experts are on the ground here in Ankara, meeting with your people, closely coordinating with our Turkish counterparts to evaluate and gather material with regard to Turkish requests to extradite Gulen in accordance our bilateral extradition treaty.”

“We have more lawyers working on this case than any other extradition in recent history,” Biden reassured his host. According to Anadolu, during his earlier meeting with Speaker of Parliament Ismail Kahraman, Biden said he and Obama “wish Gulen were in another country, not in the US.”

Erdogan lectured Biden on how Gulen is operating a global terrorist network from his little home in Pennsylvania, and repeated his demand thata the US immediately detain Gulen, so he won’t give media interviews. Biden reportedly put his face in his hands at this point, and tried to explain the US Constitution to his Turkish host.

“The Constitution and our laws require for someone to be extradited that a court of the United States has to conclude there’s probable cause to extradite,” Biden said. “How long it will take will depend on what evidence is presented. Thus far, until yesterday, there has been no evidence presented about the coup.”

“God willing, there will be enough data and evidence to meet the criteria that you all believe exists,” Biden added later.

Good luck, Mr. Vice President.

JNi.Media

Tim Kaine’s Decision to Boycott Netanyahu’s Speech Could Hurt Hillary

Saturday, July 23rd, 2016

When Hillary Clinton’s choice for VP, Virginia Senator Tim Kaine, joined the Democrats who avoided Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s March 2015 speech to a joint session of Congress, he announced: “There is no reason to schedule this speech before Israeli voters go to the polls on March 17 and choose their own leadership.” Revealing that he had labored to delay the Netanyahu appearance, Kaine said, “I am disappointed that, as of now, the speech has not been postponed. For this reason, I will not attend the speech.”

Before Kaine made his announcement, only three other senators had planned to boycott the speech: the two anti-Netanyahu Vermont Senators Bernie Sanders and Pat Leahy, and Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz. All the other Democratic senators were reluctant to commit either way, and told the press they were thinking about it. Even the biggest Democratic opponent of the Iran deal, New York Senator Chuck Schumer, did not forcefully call on his fellow Democrats to show—not willing to upset an already irate President Obama. Most Democratic legislators who said they’d avoid the speech came from blue states and blue districts. But when Kaine, whose state of Virginia until 2008 voted Republican for president, gave permission to Democrats from red states to boycott Netanyahu when he declared he was skipping the speech.

The Forward on Friday wrote that Kaine “Will be the Jewiest Vice President” under Hillary Clinton, describing him as “a friend to the Jewish community for about as long as he’s been in public service.” But when one reads the reasons why Kaine is so “Jewey” according to the Forward, one realizes Kaine would be a bonanza to leftwing Israeli Jews, very much like the folks who are currently in the White House.

Kaine supports a two-state solution, argues the Forward; also, he is a religious Catholic (so he knows all about the auto-da-fé); during his time as the governor of Virginia, Sabra built the world’s largest hummus factory outside Richmond, and hummus is Jewish, isn’t it, ask anyone from Cairo to Ramallah to Damascus; and Kaine hosted several Passover seders and played matchmaker to Conservative Rabbi Jack Moline’s daughter.

So, in considering Kaine’s pros and cons regarding Israel, you have his support for a nuclear deal with Iran, and his support for a Palestinian State, while on the plus side you have lots of hummus.

JNi.Media

Trump ‘Soon to Pick’ Pence to Run as VP on GOP Ticket

Friday, July 15th, 2016

Presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump has chosen Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate — but Trump has deferred making the official announcement, planned for a Friday news conference — “out of respect for this horrible, horrible attack that happened in Nice…. It would be totally inappropriate to have a new conference on this in light of the terror attack in France.”

Trump condemned the attack with a statement approximately eight minutes after news of the attack broke on worldwide news networks.

Instead he said he would reschedule the official announcement, he told commentator Billy O’Reilly on the “Spin Zone” program on Fox News on Thursday evening.

Pence, 57, is a “born-again” Conservative Christian who signed into law a ban on abortions when the fetus has a disability, a major Republican move — but he grew up as a Democrat and to this day loves the late “Camelot” U.S. President John F. Kennedy.

He is known as a strong supporter of the State of Israel, which he says is a result of his Christian faith. This year he signed a bill divesting Indiana from local businesses that participate in the anti-Israel Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

Pence met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other Israeli leaders during a trade mission to the Jewish State in 2014.

The first-term governor spent 12 years (six terms) as a member of Congress and earlier in the campaign was a supporter of Texas Congressman Ted Cruz.

House Speaker Paul Ryan refers to him as a “personal friend.”

During his time in Washington DC, Pence served on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and also on one dealing with technology. In 2008 he was elected chairman of the Republican Conference, the Number 3 spot in the party.

Pence has long experience in foreign affairs and has been a major critic of the JCPOA nuclear deal signed last year with Iran by the five world powers led by the United States, saying it was a threat to Israel.

Pence has also maintained a vigorous relationship with the pro-Israel AIPAC lobby organization. During his tenure as a member of Congress pushed for military defense aid for Israel.

Hana Levi Julian

US VP Joe Biden: No Justification for This ‘Intolerable, Hateful Violence’

Wednesday, March 9th, 2016

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden arrived in Israel on what may have been one of the bloodiest days in the current wave of terror – but it did not deter him from teaching two of his grandchildren that their commitment to Israel runs deeper than the issue of security.

Biden is in Israel for a two-day visit, together with his wife Jill and the two children of his deceased son Beau, whose mother-in-law is Jewish.

The vice president commented Wednesday morning during a news briefing in Jerusalem that he deliberately brought his grandchildren to Israel this time around. He said he wants them “to see; they’re not too young to understand all of what [Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu] talked about – that this is a commitment that is deeper than security.”

That’s a pretty gutsy statement coming from a man whose wife and grandchildren were eating dinner just down the beach as one person was being murdered in an attack, nine others injured.

During the news conference Biden firmly condemned the escalation in violence he encountered upon his arrival.

Biden had headed for a meeting at the Peres Center for Peace while his wife Jill and two grandchildren went to the beach for dinner.

But the meeting had barely started before he began to receive messages about one terror attack after the next – including one about a particularly bloody, gruesome attack “not very far from where” his family was having dinner.

Taylor Allen Force, a U.S. citizen, Vanderbilt graduate student, a graduate of West Point and a veteran of Afghanistan and Iraq, was murdered in that attack. Force’s wife was among the nine others who were wounded.

Biden’s comments about that nightmare followed a brief statement by Netanyahu in which he pointed out that Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas refused to condemn the terrorist attacks. His Fatah faction “actually praised the murderer of this American citizen as a Palestinian martyr and a hero,” Netanyahu said.

The prime minister also pointed out the dangers inherent in the “persistent incitement in Palestinian society” that “glorifies murders of innocent people and calls for a Palestinian state not to live in peace with Israel but to replace Israel.”

Gaza’s ruling Hamas terror organization – who will automatically gain citizenship in any Palestinian Authority sovereign state – released an official statement praising the attacks. The group called them “heroic operations” and cited them as proof the wave of terror remains.

“Hamas celebrates the martyrs that have ascended through these operations and confirms that their pure blood will, God willing, be the fuel for escalating the intifada,” the terrorist group wrote on its home page.

Not that this is anything new in our neighborhood; but it is most likely a new experience for Biden. He undoubtedly hears about this from Israelis with whom he speaks, but equally likely rarely gives it much thought.

Clearly, he gave it a lot of thought this time.

“Let me say in no uncertain terms: The United States of America condemns these acts and condemns the failure to condemn these acts. This cannot become an accepted modus operandi,” Biden told reporters.

“This cannot be viewed by civilized leaders as an appropriate way in which to behave,” he continued. “It is just not tolerable in the 21st century.

“They’re targeting innocent civilians, mothers, pregnant women, teenagers, grandfathers, American citizens,” he exclaimed.

“There can be no justification for this hateful violence and the United States stands firmly behind Israel when it defends itself as we are defending ourselves at this moment as well.”

He commented that his own family was very close to the action. “I don’t know how [close], whether it was 100 meters or 1,000 meters,” he said, “but it just brings home that it can happen – it can happen anywhere at any time.”

Hana Levi Julian

Biden Tells Atlanta Jews ‘Honest to God, I Don’t Know If I Will Run’ [video]

Friday, September 4th, 2015

Vice President Joe Biden told a packed Conservative synagogue in Atlanta Thursday night that the biggest factor that will determine if runs for the White House is whether his family can handle it.

His speech was part an Obama-Biden blitz to convince Jews to back the nuclear deal with Iran, which now has enough backing in the Senate to defeat an opposition attempt to override a presidential veto if Congress rejects the deal.

The biggest question on everyone’s mind was not what Biden had to say about “ObamaDeal” but rather if he will run. He answered questions from the audience, including one about putting his hat in the ring, and said:

Honest to God answer is I just don’t know

The most relevant factor in my decision is whether I and my family have the emotional energy to run.

Some people might think that is not appropriate. But unless I can go to my party and the American people and say that I am able to devote my whole heart and my whole soul to this endeavor, it would not be appropriate.

And everybody talks about the other factors — the other people in the race, whether I can raise the money and whether I can put together an organization. That’s not the factor. The factor is, ‘Can I do it? Can my family undertake an arduous commitment that I would be proud to undertake under ordinary circumstances?’

His circumstances are far from ordinary. His son Beau Biden, who was considering running for governor of Delaware, died of brain cancer last May.

The Vice President mentioned a previous tragedy, the death of his first wife and daughter in an auto accident in 1972, in his speech at the Ahavat Achim synagogue. Biden said:

I know from previous experience after my wife and daughter … there’s no way to put a timetable to it.

“If I can reach that conclusion that we can do it in a fashion that would still make it viable, I would not hesitate to do it. But I have to be honest with you and everyone who’s come to me, I can’t look you straight in the eye and tell you I can do it. That’s as honest as I can be.

Considering unfavorable polls of Hillary Clinton when it comes to honesty, Biden is an appealing alternative to the former Secretary of State and to Bernie Sanders, whose popularity has soared in the polls.

Sanders’ success reflects a large sector of the population that is fed up with “establishment political,” but as the Democratic nominee for president. he would leave the Democratic party more vulnerable to a loss to the Republican candidate, assuming the GOP nominee will be someone other than Donald Trump.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/biden-tells-atlanta-jews-honest-to-god-i-dont-know-if-i-will-run/2015/09/04/

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