Someday we’ll be telling stories round the campfire about what life was like when support for Israel was bipartisan. Republican and Democratic congressmen reliably voted for aid to the Jewish state. The majority of Republican and Democratic officials defended Israel in the public square. Republican and Democratic candidates reassured voters that they had Israel’s back. “Israel’s security is sacrosanct,” Barack Obama told the 2008 AIPAC policy conference. “Israel’s security is nonnegotiable,” Hillary Clinton told the same audience eight years later.
Pleasant memories. When AIPAC gathered in Washington in March, none of the major Democratic candidates then running for president bothered to attend. Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Pete Buttigieg appeared instead at the October meeting of J Street, the left-wing alternative to AIPAC founded in 2007. The message Biden delivered over video was commonplace. The others were not.