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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Happy Election Day (and All the Dirty Tricks That Go With It)

Ben Smith, whose blog is basically the clearinghouse for all news on local election day politics, put up two interesting posts that might be of interest to the Jewish community.

In the first, he posts an image of an ad (left) from this week's Charedi daily Hamodia, where US Senate candidate and Hillary Clinton opponent John Spencer hilariously dubs himself "effectively the Orthodox candidate", and attempts to explain why:

My candidacy for US Senate is rooted in values shared by all of us in traditional religious communities. I am an underdog, but I imagine traditional Jewish families understand that it is often worth standing up for your beliefs even as the underdog. The Torah is designed as a foundation for good living, and is the basis for the traditions. Our politicians, in both parties, have begun to lose sight of many of these values that we share. Values like protecting life, encouraging family, supporting the role of religious schools and hospitals, and committing to strong positions on the support of our allies. I am running because I do not want to raise children in a community that does not uphold proper family morals. In my conversations with Netanyahu, I have reaffirmed my commitment to Israel's right to defend itself against its enemies, and have stood by our allies strongly. I consider each vote a demand for attention to our core values on November 7th. I hope and pray you will support me election day and together we will fight to defend our traditional values.
In my opinion, the only think that seems Orthodox about Spencer's ad (or Spencer, for that matter) is the mangled syntax that seems more in place in a Charedi, Yiddish-as-a-first-language kind of neighborhood. If that's what he's going for, the wording of this ad is right on target. Otherwise, I find his references to shared Torah values and religious traditions to be a bit...condescending. I also find it difficult to take flowery talk about family values from a man who had two children with the woman who subsequently became his third wife (who also happened to be his mayoral chief of staff at the time), while still married to his second wife. But hey, that's just me. Maybe this ad got him lots of votes. It certainly didn't get mine. This Orthodox voter cast her vote for Hillary, with not much in the way of reservations.

In the second, he mentions a robo-call for a candidate which, in my opinion, uses anti-Charedi sentiment to try and get votes:
A source sends on a Sue Kelly robo-call informing Hudson Valley voters that the Chasidic enclave of Kiryas Joel went for John Hall, and offering a theory for why:

"KJ wants a mammoth new 13 mile pipeline to siphon water out of our acqueduct, and Sue Kelly said no."

The call seems to give the Times Herald-Record, the paper up there, as its source for that theory -- but I don't see it anywhere. Not, honestly, that anybody thinks the endorsement is about some kind of higher partisan principle.

Click here to listen to the call.
The commenters over at Ben's blog seem to agree with my take.

14 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Repugs and their disgusting tactics hit again. and it aint just locally. its country-wide.

7:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Repugs and their disgusting tactics hit again. and it aint just locally. its country-wide.

Sorry, but the Dummycrats are the other side of the same coin.

12:56 AM  
Blogger pisgam said...

Leftist Orthomom is so proud to have voted for ultra leftist Hillary; the lady who kissed yasser arafat, supports gay wrongs,
supports unlimited fetal murder, and opposes any help to yeshivos.

1:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

pisgam your a weirdo,

first of all hillary kissed suha arafat no yasser. if your going to throw insults, at least get them straight.

and hillary's record on israel has been tops as a senator. even the kahanist jewish press endorsed her.

6:53 AM  
Blogger Charlie Hall said...

Looks like Kelly's tactics may have backfired.

And anyone who finds Hilary Rodham Clinton's level of support for Jewish causes unacceptible probably is incapable of being satisfied.

7:45 AM  
Blogger Ezzie said...

I would have voted against Hilary (not for Spencer), but not because of her lack of support for Israel. As a NY Senator, she has been as strong of an Israel supporter as you'd expect.

What worries me is [aside from the many other issues I don't agree with her on] that she's a politician more than anything. I don't trust her to back Israel if it's not politically expedient. It usually is, but you never know...

10:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The major question regarding HRC is what will she support in the future? will she change her tune when it helps her agenda and how much?

10:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

agree with everything you wrote except that vote for hillary. that's sad.

11:51 AM  
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8:28 PM  
Blogger Conservative Apikoris said...

So "John Spencer" is an Orthodox Jew? Kinda like soon to be ex-congressman JD Hayworth from Arizona. He got into a pickle because he was a fan of Henry Ford's "Americanization" program, a campaign fueled by the Protocols of the Elder of Zion.

So JD decided he'd better deal with the angry Jews, so he sent a flunky to speak at a local synagogue who claimed that JD was a "more observant Jew" than the assembled Yidden. Sure, the assembled yidden may have been mostly Reform, but I think even Reform beats out JD's southern baptist faith when it comes to being an observant Jew.

JD claims this mantle of frumkeit because of his strict anti-abortion position. This, of course, didn't go over very well with the pro-choice crowd assembled at the shul. And if if these yidden were Refrom ,it should be pointed out that JD's abortion stance would forbid abortions permitted or even required under Orthodox halacha.

But it's amazing, isn't? Even the most Chrisatin goyim now want to be counted as Jews. Maybe mashiach really is on the way.

1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is amazing how Jewish Americans will pick a presidential candidate based on how he/she will support ISRAEL.

Why did you move here then?
To get the American dollars behind your religious fighting there?

If only AMERICAN Jews cared more about this country!

What a terrible shame.

6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Conservative Apikoris said....
"But it's amazing, isn't? Even the most Chrisatin goyim now want to be counted as Jews. Maybe mashiach really is on the way."

Maybe the Jews just wield so much political power because they have their thumbs on the throat of many politicians - that this candidate knows it is smart to gain their loyalty???

6:39 PM  
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