Daily Kickoff: Congressional candidate who labeled Israel ‘apartheid’ wins Minnesota primary | Sean Rad, Justin Manteen sue Barry Diller’s IAC for $2B


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VIEW IN DEBUT: An early version of today’s Daily Kickoff was available in the app-based Debut Inbox for newsletters starting at 7:03 AM EDT and then updated throughout the morning. 

RJC Chairman and former Sen. Norm Coleman’s cancer returns — by Dana Thiede: “Former Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman is again fighting the cancer that threatened his life. Coleman posted on his Facebook page Tuesday that the squamous cell cancer that was originally detected in his tonsils, throat and lymph nodes has returned. “The beast that is my cancer has returned. It has reasserted itself,” Coleman wrote… My physicians at the Mayo Clinic remain optimistic that the beast can still be contained. My hopes and prayers are for a very long time.”

“I won’t lie to you. Cancer has shaken my soul. But, it has not broken my spirit. I firmly believe in the genius and care of my Mayo Team. I believe in the power of prayer…. I am an optimist. Every fiber of my being throughout my life has had me believe that for every today we live, there will always be a better tomorrow. There is plenty life ahead of me.” [KARE11StarTribune

PRIMARY RESULTS: Ilhan Omar Wins Democratic Primary For Congress In Minnesota — by Sarah Ruiz-Grossman: “Minnesota state Rep. Ilhan Omar… defeated four other Democratic candidates in a crowded race to fill the seat that opened up when Rep. Keith Ellison (D) announced his bid to become the state’s attorney general… If Omar wins the seat, she will become one of the nation’s first Muslim women in Congress ― she’ll likely be joined in the historic feat by fellow Democrat Rashida Tlaib, who won her primary for a House seat in Michigan last week.” [HuffPost]

— “Omar has been an open critic of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians, calling its government an “apartheid” regime. She vigorously denied charges of anti-Semitism, tweeting that her criticism “is far from hating Jews.” [CNN]

INBOX — Jewish Dems Oppose Rashida Tlaib’s Pledge to Slash U.S. Military Aid to Israel: “JDCA disagrees with Michigan House candidate Rashida Tlaib’s comments suggesting that she would oppose U.S. military aid to Israel if elected to Congress… JDCA believes that threatening to cut military assistance to Israel is inconsistent with the values of the Democratic Party and the American people…”

Ellison wins Minnesota AG primary despite abuse allegations: “Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) on Tuesday won his party’s nomination in his bid to be Minnesota’s next attorney general…” [Politico]

Senator Bernie Sanders easily won Vermont’s Democratic primary for Senate, but he is expected to snub the party and run instead as an independent.[NYTimes]

In Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District, anti-Semitic candidate Paul Nehlen came in third place with 11% of the vote in the Republican primary for Speaker Paul Ryan’s House seat.

Jewish Democrat Wins Primary In Washington Swing Congressional District — by Ben Fractenberg: “Jewish Democrat Kim Schrier eked out a narrow primary victory against Jason Rittereiser to take on Republican Dino Rossi in a key Congressional race in Washington state.”[Forward]

Arthur Jones, a Holocaust denier, is running for Congress. One of his constituents would be Auschwitz prisoner No. 27,276 — by Kristen McQueary: “Stasia “Stella” Dorna was prisoner No. 27,276. The tattoo on her left forearm near her elbow is a bluish stain that once drew laughter and humiliation at a Chicago department store where employees didn’t understand what it meant…  She shudders at the thought of someone, a candidate for elected office in her district, just down the road, believing that the Holocaust was a hoax. “It happened. I was there,” she says.” [ChicagoTribune

2020 WATCH: Nathan’s Hot Dog Honcho to Host Trump Campaign Fundraiser in the Hamptons — by Jennifer Jacobs: “Howard Lorber, a Manhattan developer and executive chairman of Nathan’s Famous Inc., the hot dog company, is hosting a fundraiser for President Donald Trump in the Hamptons… on Friday… The fundraiser will benefit Trump Victory, a joint committee for Trump’s 2020 campaign and the Republican National Committee.” [Bloomberg]

Stephen Miller’s Uncle Says ‘Dozens of Family Members’ Wanted Him to Call Nephew ‘Immigration Hypocrite’ — by Jessica Kwong: “White House senior adviser Stephen Miller’s uncle David Glosser… noted that he penned the editorial Politico published Monday because “the administration has had an increasingly hostile posture towards desperate people trying to get into the country.” “I have a huge family. I wouldn’t offer to speak for my entire family, but dozens of family members encouraged me to push forward with this,” Glosser said.” [Newsweek] • Stephen Miller’s Great-Grandfather Sam Was a Chain Migrant and a Fine American [DailyBeast]

Marc Thiessen writes… “Trump’s failure to condemn the bigots of the alt-right tars his presidency: [Trump’s] failure to condemn the alt-right has also prevented him from expanding his support beyond his core supporters. With his record, he should be winning over millions of Americans who did not vote for him in 2016 but whose circumstances have markedly improved under his presidency. Instead, his support is stagnant and his disapproval numbers are growing.” [WashPost]

Tom Friedman writes… “What if Mother Nature Is on the Ballot in 2020? If in 2020 we’re in the midst of even more damaging droughts and storms than we are today, Democrats may be able to run against Trump’s make-America-polluted-again environmental strategy and his refusal to either acknowledge the threat of climate change or seize the incredible opportunity it offers America to become richer, healthier, more secure and more respected by leading the world in clean energy technologies… That message can play today in Rust Belt battleground states like Michigan and Ohio.” [NYTimes]

IRAN SANCTIONS — Iranian VP: U.S. is trying to make Iran ‘surrender’ through sanctions: “The United States is trying to make Iran surrender through the imposition of sanctions, Iranian vice president Eshaq Jahangiri said on Wednesday.” [Reuters]

FDD’s Behnam Ben Taleblu writes… “Tehran’s return to highly public missile testing can be seen as a response to the U.S. reinstating of penalties waived by the nuclear deal. Should the Fateh Mobin missile be mass produced, it would serve as further proof of Iran’s commitment to qualitatively improving it’s already quantitatively robust ballistic missile arsenal in the face of U.S. pressure.” [Axios]

Wendy Sherman, the lead negotiator of the Iran nuclear agreement in 2015, writes… “How We Got the Iran Deal: “I always expected that the greatest challenge to the deal’s success would be violations by Iran, not the political machinations of the president of the United States… I don’t know if the Iran deal can survive the reinstatement of sanctions…”

Sherman shares her experience with Iranian negotiators: “One day, during a break, I turned the conversation with [Abbas] Araghchi and [Majid] Takht-Ravanchi toward our inability to shake hands. I explained that I had grown up in a Jewish neighborhood outside Baltimore and that many of my neighbors were strictly observant Orthodox Jews—some of whom, like some conservative Muslims, avoid touching anyone of the opposite sex…  Araghchi and Takht-Ravanchi were at first slightly mortified, but as I continued my story, they began to listen with great interest. They had not known that they shared this custom with Orthodox Jews, and talking about the awkwardness of our greeting transformed its significance.”

On Bibi’s speech to Congress: “The speech was the equivalent of throwing a grenade into the negotiations. The Iranian negotiators had grown accustomed to Netanyahu’s hyperbolic rhetoric but were incensed by the fact that the U.S. Congress seemed to be endorsing it… Still, a good diplomat never wastes an opportunity, and we managed to use the [GOP] letter and Netanyahu’s congressional appearance to our advantage. When the Iranians claimed that we were asking for too much and that they could never sell the deal in Tehran, we reminded them that they were not the only ones taking political risks. “Look at this letter, and the joint session of Congress,” we said. “We have problems at home, too.” [ForeignAffairs]

LongRead — Daniel Sobelman writes in the Texas National Security Review: In asymmetric alliances, a superior state provides security to a weaker ally, who in exchange surrenders its autonomy to its stronger protector. But what happens when the weaker state’s vital interests clash with its stronger ally’s preferences? In 2011 and 2012, as Iran continued to develop and harden its nuclear program, Israel feared becoming dependent upon the United States to defend it against this potentially existential threat. To escape this scenario, and to enhance its leverage over the United States, Israel led its principal strategic ally to infer that a unilateral Israeli attack on Iran could be imminent… This article explains the outcome of this strategic interaction. [TNSR]

ON THE GROUND: Israel reopens Gaza crossing as truce talks press on — by Sakher Abou El Oun: “Israel reopened its only goods crossing with the Gaza Strip on Wednesday after closing it to most deliveries on July 9 over months of border tensions, as relative calm returned and truce talks pressed ahead… Israel’s security cabinet was reportedly meeting Wednesday to discuss the indirect talks.” [YahooNewsWSJ]

— Trump Administration Wants to See a Gaza Cease-fire ‘With or Without the Palestinian Authority’ — by Amir Tibon: “A spokesperson for the White House’s National Security Council told Haaretz… that “we would like to see an end to fighting with or without the PA,” but emphasized that the administration still believes “it would be best if the PA reasserts control in Gaza so we can get on with making lives better.”” [Haaretz]

Palestinian Succession Talk Heats Up as PLO Council Convenes — by Jonathan Ferziger and Fadwa Hodali: “Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas… will outline his vision for contending with hostility from Israel, Hamas and the Trump administration at a meeting that starts Wednesday of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s Central Council in Ramallah… The two-day gathering this week is aimed at “trying to reinforce Abbas’s legitimacy, which is fumbling in a way that is apparent to all,” said Sam Bahour, a Ramallah business consultant.” [Bloomberg]

Blocked by Israel for years, Palestinian mail finally arrives: “Palestinian postal service employees are working overtime to sort through some 10 tonnes of letters and packages blocked by Israel for up to eight years… The parcels, dating from between 2010 and this year… were released in a one-time deal.” [YahooNews]

National Security Advisor John Bolton will visit Israel next week “to discuss a range of important national security issues,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said yesterday.

Israel denies US author’s account of interrogation: “The Shin Bet issued a statement Wednesday confirming its agents briefly detained and questioned Iranian-born Reza Aslan at a border crossing, saying his “behavior there raised suspicion.” It denied Aslan’s claim he was questioned about his politics.” [AP]

David Horovitz writes… “Israeli democracy isn’t broken, but it is under assault: Uniquely in the Middle East, we in Israel have enjoyed free speech, freedom of religion, a free press, equality before the law, an independent judiciary and more. But in this Israeli summer of 2018, there’s a chill in the air. There’s a danger — and it’s not only from Damascus and Tehran, Hamas and Hezbollah.” [ToI]

** Good Wednesday Morning! Enjoying the Daily Kickoff? Please share us with your friends & tell them to sign up at [JI]. Have a tip, scoop, or op-ed? We’d love to hear from you. Anything from hard news and punditry to the lighter stuff, including event coverage, job transitions, or even special birthdays, is much appreciated. Email Editor@JewishInsider.com **

BUSINESS BRIEFS: Alphabet invests $375 million in Josh Kushner-founded Oscar Health [CNBCWired] • Stanley Druckenmiller Buys Facebook While Former Boss Soros Adds Tech Bets [BloombergBusinessInsider] • Carl Icahn Discloses Positions in VMWare and DVMT Worth $535 Million [Bloomberg] • David Bistricer and Joseph Chetrit’s Bossert Hotel awning removed for touch-ups after latest scrutiny of hotel’s makeover[BrooklynPaper] • Warren Buffett boosts bet on ailing drugmaker Teva [ToI] • Elliott Takes New Stakes in Devon, VMWare, 21st Century Fox[Bloomberg] • The Wing’s Audrey Gelman On Building A Feminist Co-Working Empire [Forbes]

STARTUP NATION: Carbyne raises $15M as Founders Fund invests in its first Israeli startup — by Ingrid Lunden: “Carbyne, a startup out of Israel that has developed a new emergency callout platform that helps providers pinpoint a callers’ exact location and enable other services to improve and speed up communication and response times — by some 65 percent on average — has raised $15 million in Series B funding. Previous backers of Carbyne have included the former prime minister of Israel, Ehud Barak, who is also the company’s chairman, and the company has now raised about $24 million, with a valuation that I understand to be in the region of $100 million.”[TechCrunch]

PROFILE — The Woman Behind the New York Times’ High-Risk, High-Reward Business Strategy — by Alexandra Bruell: “Meredith Kopit Levien got her start in the ad industry a few years after college, eventually landing at a digital marketing agency in New York. After publishing posts at Atlantic Media and Forbes, she joined the Times in 2013 as head of advertising. At the time, the seemingly inexorable decline of print advertising wasn’t the paper’s only problem; digital-ad revenue was dropping, too… Ms. Levien has become a fixture on the Madison Avenue scene, schmoozing at the industry’s major events and private gatherings. She hosts exclusive and eclectic dinners with chief marketing officers and editorial talent like Ms. Dowd.” [WSJ

SPOTLIGHT — Barry Diller’s IAC Sued by Tinder Co-Founders for $2 Billion: “Former CEO Sean Rad alleges that Tinder’s parent companies intentionally undervalued the popular dating app to deny early employees billions in stock options.” [HollywoodReporterNPR]

How Long Will Student Housing Be Big Business? — by Noah Buhayar, Kristy Westgard and Gillian Tan: “Isaac Sitt and Elliot Tamir had been investing in real estate for years when they stumbled onto the idea. They’d bought a few apartment buildings in Brooklyn in 2008 and, after the financial crisis, were struggling to rent units. So they decided to put up ads at the nearby Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, expecting to lease to doctors. Instead, they got medical students. With jobs scarce, tons of people were going to school, they realized. Sitt remembers thinking, “Hey, this is a good business,” even in a downturn. “Not only does it make sense, but I think we can raise equity for it.” Today, Sitt and Tamir run Vesper Holdings LLC, one of the largest owners of student housing complexes in the U.S… But there are signs that such luxuries may not be selling as students (and their parents) become more cost-conscious.” [Bloomberg]

Meet the BeatBuds: Scooter Braun’s Latest Kid-Pop Sensation — by Seth Abramovitch: “Jonathan Jonah and Matthew Shapiro are adjusting to an unexpected kind of rock stardom. Lifelong best friends — now 40, they met in first grade at Temple Emanuel Academy Day School in Beverly Hills — they have grown over the past five years into Los Angeles ‘hottest kids’ act with a pop-punk group known as The BeatBuds… The BeatBuds formed almost accidentally after Shapiro… suffered a back injury in 2012. While recuperating at home, he started playing music for his baby daughter… Jonah came over one day to jam, and they wrote their first kids song — the train-themed “All Aboard.” That led to a few more.” [HollywoodReporter]

CAMPUS BEAT: The 31 Best Colleges For Orthodox Jews — by Laura Adkins: “Our formula for Orthodox-friendly campuses is designed to ensure that all of the colleges on this list have kosher food on the meal plan, at least one Orthodox synagogue within 10 miles, abundant Jewish programming and an eruv surrounding their campus.” [Forward]

DESSERT: Israeli Ice Cream Shop Touts Cannabis-Flavored Treat — by Viva Sarah Press: “Big pails of nut pastes, boxes of sugars and cases of raw ingredients line the shelves of the Vaniglia gelato factory in Israel. One at a time, like a little kid in a candy shop, Itay Rogozinsky, chef glacier and owner of the popular ice cream chain, unscrews the lids or opens the boxes to show the perfect consistency of each mixture. Rogozinsky drew international attention recently when he mixed certain quantities of these natural, raw ingredients into a new flavor of ice cream: cannabis.” [NoCamels]

INBOX — Dore Gold, former Director General of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, met with former Australian Prime Minister John Howard in Sydney, Australia while on a speaking tour. [Pic]

BIRTHDAYS: Founder of Slim-Fast which he sold to Unilever in 2000 for $2.1 billion, a leading Democratic donor, S. Daniel Abraham turns 94… Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Justice Stephen Breyer turns 80… Irvin Farber turns 88… CFO of The Trump Organization, he and Donald Trump Jr. are the trustees operating the company during the Trump presidency, Allen Weisselberg turns 71… Founder and Chairman of the Executive Committee of Limmud FSU, he has also served as treasurer of the Jewish Agency and the World Zionist Organization, Chaim Chesler turns 69… Economist, CPA, investment advisor and founding member of wealth advisor RVW Investing LLC, Selwyn Gerber turns 68… Colorado resident, he is an artist and avid mountain biker, William “Bill” Weidman turns 68… Emmy Award-winning actress, she played Grace Adler on the NBC sitcom Will & Grace, Debra Messing turns 50…

Principal of Atlas Philanthropy, a consulting firm assisting charitable organizations with fundraising projects, Margot Atlas turns 49… Israeli attorney, he was an international model for Armani and appeared in the Israeli versions of The Amazing Race and Dancing with the Stars, Raz Meirmanturns 41… Program director of business ventures at Boston University, she was previously senior director of programming at MassChallenge (a global non-profit startup accelerator), Rachel Spekman turns 35… Executive Director of New York’s Transit Innovation Partnership, Rachel Sterne Haot turns 35… Director of communications, marketing strategy and content for Lemonade, a VC-backed startup in the peer to peer insurance industry, Yael Wissner-Levyturns 34… Product designer at Weight Watchers, Talia Siegel… Product and strategy professional at Uber, Ezra Mosseri turns 25… Real estate and business law attorney in the Baltimore law firm of Abramoff Neuberger, Meir Neuberger… Joe Farry… David Summer...


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