Friday, September 3, 2010
Jennifer Rubin: Sestak Throws J Street Under the Bus
Ben Smith reports that after weeks and weeks of defending his signature on the Gaza 54 letter, Joe Sestak has now confessed he was wrong to sign on to the J Street letter bashing Israel for its supposed "collective punishment" of the Palestinians. Smith observes:
Now the highest-profile signatory, Senate candidate Rep. Joe Sestak, says he regrets signing the letter -- a win for the hawks and a blow to J Street's attempt to create political space on a pro-Israel left of the Middle East conflict.
Sestak says he should have sent his own letter. Goodness knows what would have been in that.
Sestak has now alienated just about everyone on this issue. Just as he reversed course on his $350,000 earmark, here too he tried out one excuse, saw it wasn't working, and then declared he was so very sorry to have done something he denied was a problem to begin with. Both J Street and truly pro-Israel voters understand that Sestak's word is meaningless.
Moreover, recall that not only did he protest the ECI ad on this issue; Sestak also tried to have it taken down. His attorney at the time wrote that it was false to assert that Sestak had accused Israel of "collective punishment." I guess the ad was accurate after all. Maybe he should apologize to ECI as well.
Another thing: Sestak says this was the one action he regretted. So he still thinks keynoting for CAIR and lauding its work was the right thing to do? Or is that apology coming next week?
It's hard to decide who is in worse shape -- Sestak or J Street...[More.]
Oh, I'd say Sestak is like a drowning man stepping on the head of a friend as he tries to keep his head above water. Neither is in good shape. And the Chuck Hagel endorsement could hardly have helped matters, either with the left, or with his "I'm not anti-Israel" protestations. It's good news all around.