Rep. Lynn Woolsey, the congresswoman who joined in an anti-Israel chant during a Code Pink event last Sunday, has been denounced by Jewish groups across the political spectrum – with one notable exception. The activist organization J Street, whose PAC endorses Woolsey and contributed financially to her 2010 campaign, actually defended the congresswoman in a statement to the Washington Jewish Week:
“Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey has voted consistently for aid to Israel in each of her 18 years in Congress,” Jessica Rosenblum, J Street’s director of media relations told the Washington Jewish Week’s Adam Kredo. “In 2010, she supported funding for the Iron Dome missile defense system that is today protecting the citizens of southern Israel from attack. Her record is one of staunch support for the state of Israel and for American leadership to achieve peace between Israel and its neighbors through a two-state solution.”
Rosenblum added: “All JStreetPAC-endorsed candidates consistently support aid to Israel and must agree to continue supporting it to receive our endorsement.”
Multiple lawmakers who have been endorsed by J Street have backed away from the controversial group, so maybe the organization is so desperate for links to Congress it’s willing to overlook the blatant anti-Israel activism of its beneficiaries like Woolsey. At the Code Pink event, Woolsey praised the protester who interrupted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress, saying she was “proud” of the heckler.
Woolsey also appeared to join in an anti-Israel chant at the event, pumping her fist as Code Pink supporters shouted, “Not one dollar, not one dime, occupation is a crime!”
It certainly speaks to J Street’s diminishing clout on Capitol Hill that the organization feels obligated to stand behind radical anti-Israel lawmakers like Woolsey, even as overtly partisan groups such as the National Jewish Democratic Council swiftly condemned her.