2016 SCOOP: Jeb to announce Jewish Leadership Team: Jeb Bush’s campaign staff is in the process of reaching out to top Jewish leaders and donors to form a ‘National Jewish Leadership Team,’ according to an invitation obtained by Jewish Insider. Individuals who agree to endorse Jeb by September 2nd will be invited to a briefing with the candidate and “key members of the campaign senior staff” on September 25th at campaign headquarters in Miami. The Jewish Leadership Team will also gather for dinner on September 24th at the home of Glenda and Ronnie Krongold in Miami Beach.
GOP fundraiser Lisa Spies, dubbed ‘Mitt’s Matchmaker’ in 2012 and who is now working for Jeb in 2016, organized a similar group of Jewish leaders to support Romney during the last presidential cycle. The difference is Romney announced his team in August of 2012, well into the general election. Jeb is unlikely to attract the same support but he would still be getting a head start over many of the other campaigns.
There are several names from Romney’s group that are unlikely to be included on Jeb’s team. Josh Mandel, an honorary chairman on Mitt’s 2012 list, has already endorsed Marco Rubio, along with Bob Diener, Phil Rosen, Wayne Berman and Adam Hasner. Nick Muzin is now working for Ted Cruz. Norm Coleman and Barry Mannis are already backing Lindsey Graham. [JewishInsider]
LA SEN: “David Vitter, Jay Dardenne campaigns trade barbs over finance rules” by Kevin Litten: “The treasurer for the super PAC supporting Senator Vitter is married to the D.C. Finance Director of Senator Vitter’s campaign committee,” Marsanne Golsby, a spokeswoman for Dardenne’s campaign, said in an email. “There is nothing illegal about this relationship, but one has to wonder what kind of coordination happens over their dinner table each night.” Vitter’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment about Golsby’s reference to campaign fundraisers Charles and Lisa Spies, but it’s a charge that’s been made before. [Nola]
“Three Cheers for Citizens United!” by Jack Shafer: “It probably pleases Bernie Sanders each morning to wake up and realize the trajectory of his campaign shows that Chief Justice John Roberts and Antonin Scalia didn’t ruin the country in quite the way that progressive groups had feared in 2010. After all, the flood of money unleashed by them and the other justices in the majority of the Citizens United case hasn’t been enough to stop him and Donald Trump from skyrocketing in polls this summer.”[PoliticoMag]
“Inside the Trump-Bush melodrama: Decades of tension and discomfort” by Philip Rucker and Robert Costa: “Former ambassador Mel Sembler, a Bush family friend and fundraiser, said he attended the 1998 event at Trump Tower and suggested the current animus must be “newfound.” “You don’t have animosity toward somebody and then put on a fundraiser in your home,” Sembler said. “I would never put on a fundraiser — and I put on an awful lot of them — unless it was somebody I really felt like would be a great political leader.”” [WashPost]
HAPPENING TODAY — Summer Synagogue Tour For Candidates Continues — by Jared Sichel: Presidential candidate Rick Santorum will be in Los Angeles tonight, speaking and taking questions at the Modern Orthodox Beth Jacob Congregation in Beverly Hills in an event titled, “The Iran Deal and the U.S.-Israel Relationship.” A few weeks ago, Ted Cruz spoke just a couple blocks away at Nessah Synagogue.
“Biden unsure if he has the ’emotional fuel’ for 2016 run” by Jim Acosta and Kristen Holmes: “We’re dealing at home with … whether or not there is the emotional fuel at this time to run,” Biden told DNC members on a conference call that was billed as an opportunity to hear from the vice president on the Iran nuclear deal. “If I were to announce to run, I have to be able to commit to all of you that I would be able to give it my whole heart and my whole soul, and right now, both are pretty well banged up.” [CNN]
“Biden to Meet With Jewish Leaders to Make Case for Iran Nuclear Deal” by Carol Lee: “Vice President Joe Biden plans to meet with American Jewish leaders next week in Florida to make the case for the Iran nuclear deal. The Sept. 3 meeting in Miami comes as the vice president considers launching a 2016 presidential campaign and is part of Mr. Biden’s two-day trip to the nation’s largest battleground state.”
“Some major Democratic fundraisers, including Andrew Weinstein, are expected to attend the round table event in Miami. The meeting will take place at the Jewish Community Center in Davie, said a local prominent Jewish leader who had been invited. Mr. Biden is also scheduled to host an event in Washington after Labor Day to mark the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashana, which will be attended by some of the Democratic Party’s top donors.” [WSJ; MiamiHerald]
“Jewish leaders still want to get invited to the White House Hanukkah party” — New York Assemblyman Dov Hikind at anti-Iran deal rally yesterday in NYC. “You wanna be on the list for Chanukah? That’s more important than protecting our friends in the Middle East and protecting the United States of America?” [Observer; Twitter; JP]
Toronto Too: “A Toronto Jewish group made the rare move of protesting one of its own community leaders on Wednesday evening over support for the Iran nuclear deal, staging a picket outside billionaire Barry Sherman’s house during his cocktail fundraiser for the Liberal party.” [NationalPost]
INBOX: “This morning’s New York Times features a full-page advertisement displaying a letter from eleven former Jewish members of Congress calling on the current Congress to support the Iran deal.” Signees include Carl Levin, Anthony Beilenson, Barney Frank, Sam Gejdenson, Paul Hodes, Elizabeth Holtzman, Steve Kagan, Mel Levine, Abner Mikva, Steven Rothman, Robert Wexler. [PDF]
From Rabbi Yonah Bookstein: “Maybe I missed it. But did you run anything today or yesterday in JI about 750+ rabbis against the Iran deal? Rabbi Topp and I have worked across all denominational lines. It’s a remarkable list. As a student of Jewish history I’m not sure 750+ rabbis ever signed any letter together in modern American history. Thanks for hearing!” [HuffPost] • “A group of nearly 200 retired generals and admirals sent a letter to Congress on Wednesday urging lawmakers to reject the Iran nuclear agreement.” [WashPost]
“In Opinions on Iran Deal, Democrats Don’t Lack for Words” by Kristina Peterson: “Even for loquacious lawmakers, the unusual length and detail of their formal announcements on the Iran deal reflect a desire among Democrats to publicly chronicle a wrenching decision-making process. Their responses also show how the debate has dwelled on some of the most granular details of a long and technical agreement shaped by global nuclear experts.” [WSJ]
“White House pushes for Iran filibuster” by Edward-Isaac Dovere: “Obama faces a huge pile-up of trouble if he has to veto the bill, and they know it in the West Wing. Already facing major public skepticism about the deal, this could brew more doubt. The other governments involved have expressed their own wariness, concerned that a deal preserved only by a sustained veto might represent a lack of long-term American commitment.” [Politico]
TRAGIC: “Ex-Broadcaster Kills 2 on Air in Virginia; Takes Own Life” by Michael D. Shear:“Vester Lee Flanagan II, 41, identified by the authorities as the gunman, waited until Alison Parker and Adam Ward, young journalists at WDBJ in Roanoke, were on air, then killed them while recording on his own video camera.” [NYTimes]
Sarah Tuttle-Singer, social media editor at the Times of Israel, posted yesterday: “I am THIS CLOSE to THROWING SOMETHING if one more person asks why The Times of Israel’s leading story is about today’s horrific shooting… We Jewish people expect — as well we should — that the world take note when we suffer tragedy, and some of us are unwilling to do the same? No, there is no Jewish connection. And so what. There is a human connection, and unless we all see that, then we are doomed.” [Facebook]
Well, it turns out, there actually is a Jewish connection: According to several social media posts, Alison Bailey Parker, who graduated from James Madison University in 2012, was inducted as JMU’s AEPi chapter sweetheart during college.
BUSINESS BRIEFS: “Israeli Telcos Surge as Golan Hires Bank to Explore Sale” [Bloomberg] • “UBS: Israel a defensive play during uncertainty” [Globes] • “Melohn Properties’ new Tottenville retail complex to include restored 19th century home” [SiLive] • “Google’s Sergey Brin eyes lavish $49M mansion” [NYPost] • “How Shemitah, end of Jewish calendar cycle, spooks market” [EconomicTimes]
BOOK REVIEW: “The Melting of Mark Zuckerberg’s Donation to Newark Schools” by Jonathan Knee: “Watching the $200 million iceberg (Mr. Zuckerberg’s $100 million donation was contingent on raising a matching amount) slowly melt into an ocean of recrimination over the course of 256 brisk pages can be a sometimes painful exercise.” [NYTimes]
TALK OF THE TOWN: “The hot Hamptons cemetery everyone’s dying to get into” by Doree Lewak: “The situation has gotten so dire that the Jewish Center of the Hamptons — the East Hampton reform synagogue that owns the private cemetery — has been forced to cap the number allotted to members, many of whom only join to buy a plot… The Jewish cemetery, heralded as a masterpiece, is designed by famed architect Norman Jaffe, who is also buried there. In true Hamptons style, the setting is minimalist chic. No tombstones are allowed — only 12-by-18-inch stones protruding one inch high.” [NYPost]
TALK OF OUR NATION: “‘Rosenwald’ documentary looks at Jewish philanthropist who helped black schools” by Susan King: “Inspired by the Jewish ideals of tzedakah (charity) and tikkun olam (repairing the world), Julius Rosenwald partnered with African American communities to fund some 5,300 schools for African American children in the Jim Crow-era South.” [LATimes]
STARTUP NATION: “Docady, The Smart Israeli Document Storage And Management App, Raises $1.5M” by Steve O’Hear: “Docady, an iOS app that lets you store and manage all your important documents, has been doing well in the App Store since its official launch in mid-July, including being featured by Apple as a ‘best new app’ for the last few weeks. And to help continue with that momentum, the Tel Aviv-based startup has just closed a $1.5 million funding round.” [TechCrunch]
SPORTS BLINK: “Israel’s national tackle football team heads to Spain for first int’l showdown: The Israeli national tackle football team with play its first international competitive game when it faces Spain next week in Madrid. Key players on the team include three-time IFL MVP Dani Eastman from the Judean Rebels who will play at free safety, outside linebacker and return punts and kickoffs. Matt Kaufman from the Haifa Underdogs and recent arrival Alex Swieca, who spent the last three seasons with the University of Michigan Wolverines, will share quarterbacking duties. Sponsors of the Israeli team include Minnesota Vikings owner Mark Wilf, and New York hedge-fund businessman Henry Swieca.” [JPost]