Daily Kickoff

Daily Kickoff: Hillary’s Running, acc. to Ben Smith | Sen. Sanders looking to become first Jewish POTUS? | FBI Chicago Deal to Pay Pritzkers Millions

ARE WE AT WAR WITH ISIS?: As far as Congress seems to be concerned, that’s Obama’s problem. “The general attitude seems to be Don’t Ask, Just Tell” writes the online editor in this week’s New Yorker. With midterm elections coming up, most congressmen seem more concerned with preserving their seats and letting the Obama administration deal with any Benghazi-esque fallout that may result if US actions towards ISIS go awry. Which might be smart — nearly 70% of American reported believing that the US would be unsuccessful in defeating ISIS, according to a poll conducted by WSJ/NBC/Annenberg on Sunday. [New YorkerThe Week]

NYTIMES ASKS – “Are Liberal Jewish Voters a Thing of the Past?” by Joseph Berger: Obama secured more than 70% of the Jewish vote in 2012, and Jews have historically aligned with more liberal causes. With recent studies predicting growth in mainly the orthodox and ultra-orthodox sects of Judaism, many politicians are bracing themselves for the shift in what constitutes mainstream Jewish political values, hiring orthodox Jewish advisors and becoming more attuned to religiously conservative issues. [NY Times]

RAND PAUL’S EVOLVING VIEWS: Isolationist? Pragmatist? Realist? Senator (and possible presidential hopeful) Rand Paul (R-KY) has spoken out against all forms of foreign aid, including aid to Israel (with a few notable legislative exceptions) as well as US foreign military involvement, but with the threat of ISIS growing globally, Paul seems concerned with preventing the spread of terror to the US and thus has spoken publicly in support of US airstrikes. However, he wonders aloud (as he has in previous interviews this year, notably on Meet the Press) whether those living under direct threat of terror might be better suited to taking responsibility for defeating ISIS and other terror groups. “‘He’s been characterized as an isolationist,’ said Rob Givens, a retired Air Force general living in Kentucky, who has become one of Paul’s advisers on foreign affairs. ‘He’s not. He’s a realist.’” Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) calls his fellow senator (and political rival) out for simply pandering to the Republican base, noting that “it doesn’t take a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing.” [Washington PostBloomberg]

THE ENEMY OF OUR ENEMY IS CONFUSED : Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein-Amir Abdollahian has expressed his country’s committment to fighting “the real war on terror” against Syria and the Islamic state in Iraq. This means Iran is finding itself on the same side of the issue as the US… sort of. Iranian officials believe that the current US public strategy towards ISIS is weak and isn’t broad enough in scope to fully eliminate the threat of ISIS. As Ali Hashem writes, “As much as there are voices in Washington calling for Iranian engagement in the war on IS and as much as hard-liners in Tehran are pressuring President Hassan Rouhani’s administration to continue the war alone, it’s impossible to convince a Basij militia member raised all these years on slogans such as “Death to America!” and “Down with America!” that today it’s time to fight alongside each other.” [Al Monitor]

STRATEGIC DIALOGUE: What’s a bigger threat, Iran or ISIS? Depends on who you ask; American diplomats tend to see ISIS as the problem, while Israeli diplomats this weekend emphasized the growing threat from Iran. [TOI]

TOP-OPS AND INTERVIEWS: Ross Douthat on the unfortunate fact that Christians are disappearing in Europe, and quickly, because “The political left in the West associates Christian faith with dead white male imperialism and does not come naturally to the recognition that Christianity is now the globe’s most persecuted religion.” [NY Times] • Allison Kaplan Somer on why the execution of British humanitarian aid worker David Haines by ISIS was truly horrific. [Haaretz] • Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign is just beginning to heat up … or is it? Ben Smith argues that campaign-mode is simply a Clinton default (and, of course she’s running). [BuzzFeed]

**Good Monday Morning! We hope you had a restful weekend. 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**

2016 WATCH: Hillary Clinton too moderate for your tastes? Jewish Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vermont Progressive Party – VT) spent the weekend attempting to woo liberal voters in Iowa away from Hillary Clinton, speaking about income inequality and growing economic disparity. [Time]

HAPPENING TODAY: Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) is coming to Englewood, NJ this evening for a NORPAC fundraiser at the home of Lori & Kevin Lemmer. Rep. Capito is the Republican frontrunner for the open West Virginia U.S. Senate seat of retiring Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV).

STARTUP NATION: At a Tel Aviv University cyber security conference on Sunday, Prime minister Netanyahu “spoke of the significance of Internet security both in the fight against terrorism and for the country’s future economy.” [JPost] • “Ericsson is making its first foray into Israel, the Swedish telecommunications technology maker saying over the weekend that it was spending $95 million to acquire Fabrix Systems of Ra’anana. The purchase, which is expected to be competed in the fourth quarter, will give Ericsson control of a leading provider of cloud storage, computing and network delivery used for delivering digital video recorder, video on demand and other services. [Haaretz]

REAL-ESTATE ROUNDUP: “The New York-based private Orthodox Jewish institution Yeshiva University received a $175 million loan from Kansas City, Mo.-based UMB Bank to refinance five educational buildings the university owns in Manhattan. The 10-year debt, which closed in late August, replaced previous short-term loans that were coming due this fiscal year and “raised additional liquidity and runway to support university initiatives in the coming years,” a spokesperson for the university told Mortgage Observer.” [Commercial Observer] • “A deal involving the federal government’s most expensive lease in Chicago produced millions of dollars in profits for a development group that included Penny Pritzker, a top campaign fund-raiser for President Barack Obama who is now his commerce secretary, a Chicago Sun-Times / Better Government Association investigation has found. The developers also included Jack Higgins, a friend and political backer of former Mayor Richard M. Daley. Over the 14-year term of the lease, the government will pay $280 million in rent and operating expenses for the Near West Side property, which houses the FBI’s Chicago headquarters.” [CST]

TALK OF OUR NATION: Germany’s leaders are took a stand against rising anti-Semitism this weekend. “‘That people in Germany get mobbed again, threatened and attacked when they let themselves be recognized as Jews or when they speak out in favor of the state of Israel is an outrageous scandal,׳ said [Chancellor Angela Merkel] in an address at a rally against anti-Semitism organized by the Central Council of Jews.” [WSJ] • “Paris police have arrested a convicted anti-Semite and radical black power activist after he arrived in France to promote a new book, a police source told AFP Sunday. Kemi Seba, head of the French branch of the New Black Panther Party, was detained Saturday after a public appearance at the Main d’Or theatre in the French capital, the source said.” [Yahoo News]

HOLLYWOOD: “Some 300 Hollywood elite published an ad in The New York Times holding Hamas responsible for the ‘devastating loss of life’ in the latest Hamas-Israel conflict. Actors to directors to studio heads signed the statement by members of the Creative Community for Peace. Among the signers are Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Seth Rogen, Aaron Sorkin, Roseanne Barr, Sherry Lansing, Sarah Silverman and Kathy Ireland.” [Haaretz] • Lady Gaga preformed in Israel Saturday night, after canceling a show earlier this summer due to the conflict with Gaza. Crowds were significantly smaller than earlier shows at the same Tel Aviv venue before this summer’s conflict. [WSJ] • U2’s Israeli Manager Guy Oseary Replies to Haters: If You Don’t Like This Music Pro Bono, Delete It [Mashable]

WHERE’S THE BEEF?: Not on Rep. Ted Deutch’s (D-FL) plate. The Jewish Congressman has officially gone vegan (plus the occasional chocolate-chip cookie, but who can blame him). [Sun Sentinal]

THERE’S THE BEEF: Sruley “Izzy” Eidelman has been selling kosher smoked meats to a loyal fanbase in Brooklyn, and is opening a smokehouse in Crown Heights, Brooklyn next month. From the looks of their Facebook fan-page, it’s going to be a hit. [DNAINYIzzy’s BBQ]

TALK OF THE TOWN: The final letters were added on Sunday to the Torah scroll for the first synagogue in Hoboken, NJ to open in more than 100 years. [NJ.com]

REVIEW: ‘Thirteen Days in September” by Lawrence Wright, on the Camp David Summit of 1978. Of the book, Elliott Abrams of the Council on Foreign Relations says, “Mr. Wright is especially good at showing, day by day through the negotiations, that each of the three teams consisted of diverse and often clashing personalities, led by men trying their best to advance what they saw as their country’s interests.”  [WSJ]

BIRTHDAYS: Sen. Mark Kirk turns 55

That’s all folks; have a great day!
**Have a tip, suggestion, or even an op-ed? We’d love to hear from you. Email  editor@jewishinsider.com**

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