I want to express my objections to what is obviously a contrived attack by Republicans to question the bona fides of several standing Democrats, the latest of which was the substance of your article on Sept. 23 regarding Rep. Bill Pascrell, a man who deserves our respect and certainly has mine (“Opponent challenges Pascrell on Israel, Iraq.”)
The Republican opponent has suggested that Mr. Pascrell could lose the Jewish vote because of his perceived support of the Arab world. On the contrary, Rep. Pascrell has been a friend to both communities, working to advance both of their interests while at the same time promoting peace and security. Israel, as I have repeatedly stated in this paper and for anyone who will listen, has enjoyed well-deserved bipartisan support. Moreover, the best approach to the Middle East is an active dialogue and strong diplomatic statecraft aggressively supported by the Obama administration and Rep. Pascrell.
Those who assert that he is opposed to or not as supportive of Israel need only look at his voting record in Congress. From bilateral economic cooperation to foreign aid to addressing the danger posed by a nuclear Iran, Rep. Pascrell has cosponsored and supported numerous bills which express that Israel is one of our country’s strongest allies and maintain U.S. commitment to the survival of Israel.
The Jewish community I know is committed to Rep. Pascrell and his reelection. The suggestion that he has been intentionally giving more attention to one community over the other with the hope of garnering votes is without basis in fact. Rep. Pascrell has very successfully represented a diverse constituency in Congress and I am proud to strongly support his reelection and urge all to join me.
Larry A. Stempler, Esq.