Photo Credit: RJC/Twitter
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at the Republican Jewish Coalition’s conference in Las Vegas. Nov. 6, 2021.

About 750 boisterous Jewish supporters of the Republican Party gathered in Las Vegas this past weekend to hear from potential Republican presidential candidates, along with current elected officials, with the focus on the GOP’s goal of taking back the Congress and Senate in the 2022 midterms, and the White House in 2024.

Speaker after speaker at this year’s Republican Jewish Coalition, which was canceled last year as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, accused the Biden administration of failing on many issues but especially on damaging the strong U.S.-Israel ties developed under the Trump administration, while also showing weakness against Iran as they pursue nuclear weapons.

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At the conference, there was a sense of optimism headed towards the midterms was expressed following the successes and gains of the Republican Party in state elections last Tuesday, especially with the surprise victory of newly elected GOP governor of Virginia, Glenn Youngkin.

During a pre-taped message by Donald Trump, the former president said that “no president has ever been a better friend to the State of Israel, and I am proud of that.”

He went on to list his administration’s accomplishments, including moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

Trump slammed the Biden administration for showing weakness on Iran, thus putting the Jewish state in danger. Trump said that U.S. President Joe Biden’s “unbelievable weakness toward the Iranian regime directly provoked a missile attack on Israeli civilians,” referring to the thousands of rockets fired by Hamas at Israel this past May.

“Biden shamefully criticized and slandered the nation of Israel even when it was under attack,” he said.

While Trump loomed large over the conference and has yet to signal if we will run for president in 2024, several of the other speakers at the conference included presidential hopefuls for 2024, making their pitches to the friendly audience.

Former Vice President Mike Pence told the crowd, “Make no mistake about it, [U.S] President Joe Biden has turned his back on Israel,” citing the current administration’s desire to rejoin the 2015 Iran nuclear deal—the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), that the Trump administration pulled out of in May 2018.

He also took Biden to task for planning to open a consulate for the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem, a move he said was illegal, by establishing a diplomatic mission for a foreign entity in Israel’s capital. Pence called on Congress to intervene in order to prevent the move.

‘We can no longer talk about the past’

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley received an exceptionally warm welcome as she reinforced her support for Israel, citing how under her watch the Trump administration pulled out of the United Nation’s Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for unfairly singling out and condemning Israel each time it convened. Under the Biden administration, the United States recently rejoined the UNHRC.

Haley also expressed her admiration for the pro-Israel Washington lobby AIPAC but encouraged the body to distance itself from politicians who support policies harmful to Israel.

“I have spoken at AIPAC events many times, and they’ve always been unbelievably supportive to me,” she said. “If a politician supports the disastrous Iran deal, opposes moving the American embassy to Jerusalem and is embraced by anti-Semites who support the BDS movement, then your pro-Israel group should have absolutely nothing to do with him.”

In addition to focusing on Israel, many of the speakers took the Biden administration to task on domestic issues, including education, critical race theory, personal liberties and freedoms during the COVID-19 pandemic and more.

He went on to list his administration’s accomplishments, including moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

Trump slammed the Biden administration for showing weakness on Iran, thus putting the Jewish state in danger. Trump said that U.S. President Joe Biden’s “unbelievable weakness toward the Iranian regime directly provoked a missile attack on Israeli civilians,” referring to the thousands of rockets fired by Hamas at Israel this past May.

“Biden shamefully criticized and slandered the nation of Israel even when it was under attack,” he said.

While Trump loomed large over the conference and has yet to signal if we will run for president in 2024, several of the other speakers at the conference included presidential hopefuls for 2024, making their pitches to the friendly audience.

Former Vice President Mike Pence told the crowd, “Make no mistake about it, [U.S] President Joe Biden has turned his back on Israel,” citing the current administration’s desire to rejoin the 2015 Iran nuclear deal—the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), that the Trump administration pulled out of in May 2018.

He also took Biden to task for planning to open a consulate for the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem, a move he said was illegal, by establishing a diplomatic mission for a foreign entity in Israel’s capital. Pence called on Congress to intervene in order to prevent the move.

‘We can no longer talk about the past’

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley received an exceptionally warm welcome as she reinforced her support for Israel, citing how under her watch the Trump administration pulled out of the United Nation’s Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for unfairly singling out and condemning Israel each time it convened. Under the Biden administration, the United States recently rejoined the UNHRC.

Haley also expressed her admiration for the pro-Israel Washington lobby AIPAC but encouraged the body to distance itself from politicians who support policies harmful to Israel.

“I have spoken at AIPAC events many times, and they’ve always been unbelievably supportive to me,” she said. “If a politician supports the disastrous Iran deal, opposes moving the American embassy to Jerusalem and is embraced by anti-Semites who support the BDS movement, then your pro-Israel group should have absolutely nothing to do with him.”

In addition to focusing on Israel, many of the speakers took the Biden administration to task on domestic issues, including education, critical race theory, personal liberties and freedoms during the COVID-19 pandemic and more.

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Joshua Hasten is the International Spokesperson for Gush Etzion. He hosts the weekly “Israel Uncensored” radio broadcast on The Land of Israel Network, and is an international Middle East Correspondent in print and on television. Joshua is also a sought-after speaker around the world. His workshops and lectures on pro-Israel advocacy have impacted thousands. Joshua was the CAMERA organization’s 2009 Letter Writer of the Year, and is a member of the Judea and Samaria Speaker’s Bureau. Originally from Indianapolis, Indiana, he resides in Elazar, Israel.