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RJC Statement on Ron Dermer Being Named as Ambassador-Designate from Israel to the U.S.





Washington, D.C. (July 9, 2013) - The Republican Jewish Coalition released a statement today in response to the announcement that Ron Dermer will be Israel's next Ambassador to the U.S, replacing current Ambassador Michael Oren.


RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said, "The RJC extends warm congratulations to our friend Ron Dermer on this well-deserved honor. Ron is known for being a trusted and effective aide to Prime Minister Netanyahu. Responsibility for maintaining the Jewish state's most vital international alliance is a heavy one, but knowing Ron as we do, we are confident that he is up to the job.


"A visit with Ron has been a highlight on the itinerary of recent RJC delegations to Israel. We look forward to reciprocating his hospitality during his posting in Washington, DC. Mazel tov, Ron.

"This is also a moment to thank Ambassador Michael Oren for four years of exemplary service during which he advanced the cause of U.S.-Israeli friendship in countless ways. We wish Ambassador Oren well in his future endeavors."



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RJC Statement on the Nomination of Samantha Power to be U.N. Ambassador

Washington, D.C. (June 5, 2013) -- The Republican Jewish Coalition released a statement today in response to the announcement that President Obama intends to name Samantha Power as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.

RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said, “Samantha Power has a record of statements that are very troubling to Americans who support Israel. We urge members of the U.S. Senate to question her closely about her past statements and writings. She must respond to the strong doubts about her views raised by that record. Senators should also examine her tenure as head of the President’s Atrocity Prevention Board to see what results, if any, came out of her time there.

“The U.S. has an important role to play in the United Nations to defend freedom, Western values, and our democratic allies. We need an ambassador who will fight for U.S. interests in the international arena. Samantha Power must show the Senate and the American people that she can fill that role.”

Background:
In 2008, as an academic who taught at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Samantha Power suggested  that the U.S. should invade Israel militarily to impose a settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and protect “a new state of Palestine.” Her writing and public appearances reflected her views that special-interest lobbies in this country (read, the “Israel lobby”) have too great an impact on our foreign policy in the Middle East.

More recently, she served as the first director of President Obama’s new Atrocity Prevention Board. In her months in that role, the APB was silent about the thousands of civilians killed by the Syrian government, the attacks by the Sudanese government of the Nuba tribes in South Sudan, and other crises around the world. The APB has no web site or social media presence, and has not responded to letters from human rights activists and genocide scholars regarding ongoing atrocities.
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RJC Statement on the Passing of Sen. Frank Lautenberg

Washington, D.C. (June 3, 2013) -- The Republican Jewish Coalition notes the passing today of Sen. Frank Lautenberg.

RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said, "Frank Lautenberg was a staunch supporter of Israel and a leader in Jewish communal life. He served his country during World War II and in decades of dedicated public service. His work in the Senate helped thousands of Soviet Jews and other victims of religious persecution to reach freedom. He was a proud Jew and a proud American. May his family and friends be comforted among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem."
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RJC Applauds Florida Families First Budget

Governor Scott Signs into Law Historical, Cultural, and Business Items Important to Floridians and the Jewish Community


Boca Raton, FL (May 31, 2013) -- Today the Republican Jewish Coalition of Florida and Board of Directors member Ambassador Mel Sembler applauded Governor Rick Scott and the Florida Legislature for completing a budget that included initiatives important to Florida's Jewish community and all Floridians.

The following statement was released:

On behalf of the members of the Republican Jewish Coalition, I applaud Governor Rick Scott and his partners in the Florida Legislature who included three key items in the final budget signed into law. The Florida Families First Budget includes:

  • $950,000 for the Florida Holocaust Museum in St. Petersburg, to continue the important mission of educating our youth to remember and respect the Holocaust, its victims and survivors.



  • $1 million for Space Florida R&D which will be matched dollar-for-dollar by Israel, to support innovative research for the economic benefit of both nations.



  • $100,000 to establish a Tel Aviv office of Enterprise Florida. This will provide an Enterprise Florida location in Israel, focused on facilitating joint economic development between Florida and Israel.


These three items benefit all Floridians and are important to the Jewish community. They demonstrate a deep understanding for the struggle of the Jewish people and an appreciation of Florida's unique position in the business and cultural alliance between the United States and Israel.
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RJC Releases "Blueprint for Victory" Video

RJC's outreach in 2012 is a model for Republicans


Washington, D.C. (April 26, 2013) -- The Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) today released a video, made in cooperation with our creative partner, Jamestown Associates, that highlights the RJC's successful outreach effort in the Jewish community in 2012, how it was accomplished, and the insights it offers for Republican Party outreach to other "non-traditional Republican voters" in the future.

RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said, "The RJC's experience offers some ideas for how the Republican Party can effectively reach out to Hispanics, African Americans, Asians, women, younger voters, and other voters.

"We believe that by promoting an inclusive, conservative vision and adapting the RJC's strategies, the GOP will once again be the majority party in this country," Brooks said.

See the video on the RJC web site and on YouTube.
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RJC: Kerry's Remarks Must Not Stand

Brooks: Unconscionable to equate IDF self-defense with terrorist murders


Washington, D.C. (April 22, 2013) — The Republican Jewish Coalition strongly objected to Secretary of State John Kerry's remarks likening some Turks' anger over Israel's self-defense in the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident to Americans' outrage over last week's terrorist attack on innocent spectators at the Boston Marathon.

RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said, "Secretary Kerry should retract these remarks as soon as possible. It's unconscionable to compare the loss of life resulting from an act of self-defense to the results of cold-blooded, premeditated murder by terrorists."

Brooks added, "We understand that Secretary Kerry has reason to be deeply worried by the disappointing results to date from the President's push to end the rift between Israel and Turkey. But he needs to correct the record so that our allies and critics around the world don't get the idea that the world's most powerful democracy has lost its moral bearings."

Background:
During a press conference in Istanbul yesterday, Secretary Kerry said the following about Turkish anger over the 2010 incident, "I know it’s an emotional issue with some people. I particularly say to the families of people who were lost in the incident we understand these tragedies completely and we sympathize with them. And nobody – I mean, I have just been through the week of Boston and I have deep feelings for what happens when you have violence and something happens and you lose people that are near and dear to you. It affects a community, it affects a country. We’re very sensitive to that." (Emphasis added) http://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2013/04/207813.htm
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Republican Jewish Coalition Hires New Florida Director

Washington, D.C. (April 10, 2013) -- The Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC), the nation's only grassroots organization of Jewish Republicans, announced the hiring of Matthew Bogdanoff as the RJC's Florida regional director. Bogdanoff, a graduate of the Florida State University, comes to the RJC with extensive experience in political campaign management. Bogdanoff has worked on races including city commission, school board, the Florida House of Representatives, the Florida state Senate, and most recently the 2012 presidential campaign.

In addition to his campaign experience, Bogdanoff has worked in the Florida House as a legislative aide. During the 2012 presidential election, Bogdanoff worked as a Florida field representative for the RJC. As part of the RJC team, he assisted in delivering the RJC message to the Florida Jewish community and was instrumental in making the RJC's Florida outreach a huge success.

"The RJC is excited and fortunate to have Matthew Bogdanoff as our new Florida regional director," said RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks. "As a native Floridian, Matt understand the community and the state and we look forward to working with him to expand the RJC's outreach efforts in this critical part of the country."
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RJC Mourns Passing of Margaret Thatcher

Washington, D.C. (April 8, 2013) - The Republican Jewish Coalition mourns the passing of Margaret Thatcher, one of the pivotal figures of the late 20th century fight against tyranny.

As prime minister of Great Britain, Thatcher saved that country's economy, fought terrorism, and stood firmly with Israel. She was a fierce Cold Warrior who helped bring an end to the Soviet empire and proved that conservative principles - free markets, personal freedom, and personal responsibility - could indeed change the world for the better.

She was a remarkable woman and an inspiration to people around the world. Her strength, her leadership, and her clear-sighted approach to policy will be sorely missed.
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Happy Passover!

The officers and staff of the Republican Jewish Coalition wish you and your family a happy Passover, a chag kasher v'sameach.

All RJC offices will be closed on the first two days and the last two days of Passover, March 26-27 and April 1-2 . The RJC enewsletter will not be published on March 28.
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Democrats Want Obama to Put More Pressure on Israel; Republicans and Independents Disagree

New Poll Highlights Continued Move of Democrats Away from Historic Bipartisan Support for Israel


Washington, D.C. (March 19, 2013) - A new Gallup poll shows a striking difference of opinion between Republicans and Democrats on how to handle the Israel-Palestinian conflict. Democrats want President Obama to put more pressure on Israel to make compromises to end the conflict, while Republicans and Independents want the U.S. to put more pressure on the Palestinians.

According to Gallup, 64% of Republicans would like the President to put more pressure on the Palestinians, while just 15% say to put more pressure on Israel. 48% of Independents say pressure the Palestinians and 22% think the U.S. should pressure Israel. In contrast, only 34% of Democrats support more pressure on the Palestinians, but a larger share, 38%, think the U.S. should put more pressure on Israel.

This follows another Gallup poll last week showing that American support for the State of Israel is at an all-time high overall, but 78% of Republicans expressed more sympathy for Israel than for the Palestinians, while Democrats did so only 55% of the time.

RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said, "The 'Israel gap' between Republicans and Democrats is deeply troubling for pro-Israel Americans who appreciate our country's historic bipartisan support for Israel. As rank-and-file Democrats move to the left on issues related to Israel, the divide between the two parties will widen. Pro-Israel Democratic leaders must work to rebuild stronger support for Israel within their community."


Gallup: Americans Favor More Pressure on Palestinians Than Israelis
http://www.gallup.com/poll/161405/americans-favor-pressure-palestinians-israelis.aspx?version=print

Gallup: Americans' Sympathies for Israel Match All-Time High
http://www.gallup.com/poll/161387/americans-sympathies-israel-match-time-high.aspx
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