Republican Jewish Coalition

The RJC Weekly Newsletter

May 07, 2020

Your weekly look at the latest news, analysis, and RJC activities around the country.

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While RJC offices are closed and our staff are teleworking, you can reach us by email or by phone (please leave a voicemail message and your call will be returned). Contact information for our offices can be found on our web site. Please visit us online for the latest RJC news, to volunteer for our 2020 outreach efforts, to see details of upcoming events (when they resume), and to donate to the RJC.


— Featured —

Democrats Turning Their Backs on Israel, Continued

The news this week pointed to efforts by leftwing Democrats to move their party, and Joe Biden, their presumptive presidential nominee, farther away from Israel.


Matthew Mainen, writing at the Washington Examiner, warns that Biden may be more damaging to Israel than Bernie Sanders would have been: 

During his eight years as second-in-command in the Obama administration, deemed by Israelis to be the most hostile to their interests in recent history, Biden routinely attacked the underpinnings of Jewish self-determination and pushed for failed policies that have proven to exacerbate the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

…Biden recently embraced an endorsement from J-Street, a far-left organization that seeks to impose upon Israel policies thoroughly rejected by the Israeli electorate. [With] this, combined with his increasingly hostile rhetoric against Israel’s democratically elected government, we can expect him to embrace and even amplify the Obama administration’s posture toward the Jewish state if he becomes president.

Biden is under increasing pressure to back “Palestinian rights” over Israel’s sovereignty and security. Jacob Kornbluh reports on a letter from 32 former diplomats and national security officials, calling on Democratic Party leaders to include in the party’s 2020 platform, “clear opposition to ongoing occupation, settlement expansion and any form of unilateral annexation of territory in the West Bank” by Israel. 


The list of signers includes many familiar names - former Clinton and Obama administration officials whose views on Israel are well-known – such as Strobe Talbott and Anthony Lake; Ben Rhodes, one of the architects of Pres. Barack Obama’s dangerous nuclear plan with Iran; and the two authors of the article Amb. David Friedman rebutted this week (see below), Phil Gordon and Rob Malley.


Biden – also known as "J Street Joe", now that he has enthusiastically accepted the leftwing group’s endorsement – told the JTA about some of his policy plans regarding Israel and the Palestinians:

Joe Biden said the US should press Israel not to take any actions that jeopardize a two-state solution, a reference to reports that Israel may try to annex part of the West Bank. Biden, in a statement Tuesday to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, also said that as president he would resume US assistance to the Palestinians, reopen the US consulate in eastern Jerusalem that administers primarily to the Palestinians and would seek to reopen the Palestine Liberation Organization mission in Washington.

“A priority now for the cause of Israeli-Palestinian peace should be resuming our dialogue with the Palestinians and pressing Israel not to take actions that make a two-state solution impossible,” Biden said. “I will reopen the US consulate in East Jerusalem, find a way to re-open the PLO’s diplomatic mission in Washington, and resume the decades-long economic and security assistance efforts to the Palestinians that the Trump Administration stopped.”

In other words, a President Biden would take us right back to the failed policies of the Clinton and Obama years and even further. That would be dangerous for Israel and the US.


Amb. David Friedman

Friedman Rebuts Attacks on Trump Peace Plan

US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman pushed back hard against an article by two Obama-era national security officials who attacked President Donald Trump’s “Vision for Peace and Prosperity” proposal. Friedman describes the article’s authors, Philip Gordon and Robert Malley, as “champions of the Iran deal and apologists for Palestinian intransigence.” He knocks down their false arguments point by point. One example:

The authors argue that the limited annexation of West Bank territory envisioned by Trump would jeopardize Israel’s future as a Jewish state. Wrong. Under the Trump vision, Israel would be claiming sovereignty over a fraction of the West Bank, comprising territories that either are sparsely populated or overwhelmingly populated by Israeli Jews. Israel wouldn’t be doing that to territories with significant Palestinian populations. Therefore, the vision wouldn’t alter the Jewish majority within the State of Israel. In fact, it would increase it.

Read the whole thing here.


Randy Feenstra

RJC PAC Endorses Randy Feenstra

The RJC PAC announced that it is endorsing and supporting Republican primary challenger Randy Feenstra in his race to defeat Rep. Steve King (IA-4). RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks said

We have made it clear for some time that Rep. King does not represent the values of the Republican Jewish Coalition or the Republican Party. We commended the January 2019 decision by House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy and the House Republican Steering Committee to remove Rep. King from his committee posts. The RJC has not endorsed him, contributed to him, or hosted events with him in many years and, in fact, the RJC has spoken out against him on many occasions.

… The RJC PAC is proud to endorse an excellent candidate, Iowa State Senator Randy Feenstra. Randy, now in his third term in the Iowa Senate, holds a leadership position as the Assistant Majority Leader and chairs the important Ways and Means Committee. He is a staunch conservative who supports President Trump’s policies.

NBC News reported on this story

The RJC’s political action committee has cut a $5,000 check to Feenstra and plans to fundraise for him, according to Brooks.

The organization contributed more than half a million dollars to help Republicans in the 2018 elections, according to the nonpartisan Center For Responsive Politics.

Cong. Denver Riggleman speaking at the 2019 RJC Leadership Meeting in Las Vegas.

RJC Supports Rep. Denver Riggleman

The RJC supported Denver Riggleman in his successful bid for Virginia’s 5th congressional district seat in 2018 and we continue to support him strongly this year. Riggleman is facing primary challengers this year, but his staunch pro-Israel record and steady work in Congress make him the RJC’s choice. RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks told the Jewish Insider

“He’s one of our favorites and one of our top priorities right now,” Republican Jewish Coalition Executive Director Matthew Brooks told JI. “He’s been a terrific leader and an outspoken supporter of the issues we care about.” 

… The RJC’s PAC plans to donate the maximum possible amount to Riggleman, and affiliates around the country are raising money for his primary campaign, according to Brooks. The RJC wants to “make sure he has the resources to beat back the primary, and we’re confident he will,” Brooks said.

Countdown to Election Day


The RJC is committed to reelecting President Donald Trump, keeping the Senate, and winning back the House. We encourage our members to participate in our outreach phonebank project to help Republicans win in November. It's easy, and you can do it from home! Here's how YOU can help: 

- Sign up to call Jewish voters from home by clicking HERE
- Fill out all of the fields.
- Listen to the instructions and write down your username and password when a member of the RJC Victory Team contacts you.
- Make as many phone calls as you can. Everyone you speak to is a potential vote for President Trump and the GOP!


Sign up now and you could be the next RJC Volunteer of the Week!



The Republican Jewish Coalition is hiring field staff for our advocacy efforts in support of President Donald Trump’s reelection in various battleground states. CLICK HERE for details and application information. 



The RJC PAC has endorsed a terrific slate of House and Senate incumbents, and we need them to continue their work on Capitol Hill! CLICK HERE to donate through the RJC PAC portal and show your support for our great candidates!


And don't forget your RJC/Trump kippah! 
Our extremely popular red Trump kippah is now for sale for just $18. This includes shipping and handling. Supplies are limited. 



— Short Takes —

Germany bans Hezbollah and labels entire group a terrorist organization

Mosques affiliated with Hezbollah were raided in the early hours of the morning after Germany entirely banned the Lebanese Shiite group from the country. The move [last week] is a major blow to Hezbollah, which enjoys large amounts of support from Iran. Previously only Hezbollah’s “military” wing was outlawed but not its “political” wing.


The Jerusalem Post reports that Israel's intelligence agency The Mossad informed German officials of Hezbollah-sponsored terror activity in Germany, which led to the country banning the organization. 


For the State Dept’s top spokeswoman, her journey to Judaism began in Baghdad

State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus has traveled the world, but as Gabby Deutsch reports at the Jewish Insider: “Nearly every step of the way, Ortagus’s career advancement was accompanied by an improbable Jewish journey: the evangelical Christian Republican converted to Judaism with a Conservative rabbi, culminating in a wedding officiated by feminist icon and Trump foe Ruth Bader Ginsburg.” Incredibly, much of her pre-conversion studies were conducte+d “virtually” while Ortagus was posted in Baghdad and later in Riyadh.


— Tweets —






— Events —


RJC Victory Team National Day of Action


Please join us for the upcoming RJC Victory Team Virtual Days of Action scheduled for Thursday, May 14 and Thursday, May 21. We'll continue our calls to potential Jewish voters in Pennsylvania and Ohio, key battleground states of the 2020 election cycle. Click here to sign up and help! 


We look forward to scheduling in-person grassroots events and resuming our chapter activities around the country as soon as possible. Don't forget to check our web site for updates. 


We also encourage you to check out the terrific content and virtual events offered by our sister organization, the Jewish Policy Center.

— Connect —

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