Daily Kickoff

Daily Kickoff: NYTimes chart highlighted Iran deal opponents’ Jewishness | George W. met with Jeb’s Jewish donors | Tom Brady’s lawyer Jeffrey Kessler

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Editor’s Note: Wishing you all a Shanah Tovah and a happy Jewish New Year. We hope you’ve enjoyed reading and engaging with us during our inaugural year and we look forward to growing together with you during the coming year. The Daily Kickoff will be on hiatus until after Rosh Hashanah. 

On the 14th anniversary of the September 11th attacks, follow former White House Press Secretary @AriFleischer as he recounts that horrific day. [TwitterStorify]

SCENE LAST NIGHT: Approximately one hundred and fifty guests, including Jewish leaders, diplomats, journalists and members of Congress, gathered last night at the home of Israel’s Ambassador Ron Dermer and his wife Rhoda in Chevy Chase to toast the upcoming Jewish New Year. Dermer began by joking, “I hope you all had a more uneventful summer than I (laughter)… I could do boring for while. It’d be fine for me. But we are obviously meeting at a time when everyone is discussing the deal with Iran, a few of you raised it with me tonight not surprisingly, and I want to take this opportunity to let you know that Israel is opposed to the deal (laughter). I know that comment is going to set the entire twitter-sphere ablaze.”

“The right of Israel to convey its views about a deal with an Iranian regime that actively works and openly calls for our annihilation… should not be the subject of controversy. It should be self-evident. But to some, it’s not. Because while no one questions the right of the Ambassadors of the other P5+1 countries to meet with members of Congress and explain why they believe this is a good deal, some have questioned whether it is appropriate for Israel to make its case to those same members of Congress. That’s pretty disturbing. Because there is no country in the world that has a greater right than Israel to weigh in on this issue because there is no country in the world that has more at stake than Israel.”

“But regardless of where you stand on the nuclear deal with Iran, on this Rosh Hashana, let us all raise a glass and toast the fact that the Jewish people are voiceless no more. Israel has provided us with a shofar, with a sovereign voice among the nations. Israel will continue to blow that shofar with pride. And on this Rosh Hashana, let us also toast a privilege we all have – the privilege to live at a time when the Jewish people not only have a voice but when we also have the power and will to defend ourselves – a will that no deal and no force on earth will ever break.” [TranscriptAudio]

SPOTTED: (apologies in advance if we missed anyone) Rep. Eliot Engel, Sen. Norm Coleman, Rep. Henry Waxman, White House Jewish Liaison Matt Nosanchuk, White House receptionist (ROTUS) Leah Katz-Hernandez, Rabbi Levi Shemtov, Rabbi David Saperstein, Hudson’s Ken Weinstein, FDD’s Clifford May, Tip’s Josh Block, ZOA’s Mort Klein, B’nai B’rith’s Dan Mariaschin, OU’s Nathan Diament, JNF’s Russell F. Robinson, Andrea Mitchell, Jordana Cutler, Tom Allon, Ali Weinberg, Josh Rogin, Rosie Gray, Eli Lake, Michael Wilner, NCSJ’s Mark Levin, Yarden Golan, Michael Doran, David Makovsky, Jonny Fluger, Noah Pollak, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, Aaron Sagui, and IAC’s Miri Belsky.

A Jewish Dem emails… “Seems as though there were almost no members of the pro-deal crowd at Dermer’s tonight — besides Nosanchuk, who invited Dermer to Biden’s house last night. Lots of outspoken deal opponents were at Biden’s and, maybe more remarkable, many people who had been invited to the Rosh Hashanah parties at the residence of the Israeli ambassador for years weren’t invite this year. Most noticeable absence: DWS”

Speaking of DWS — from Politico Influence: “Republican strategist Ana Navarro, with dinner date former Sen. Norm Coleman, requesting to move to another table across the restaurant because the maître d’ was attempting to seat her at a table near DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.” [Politico]

TOP TALKER: “NYTimes edits graphic that highlighted Jewish lawmakers opposed to Iran deal” by Peter Sterne: “On Thursday, the New York Times published a graphic about opposition to the Iran nuclear deal. The graphic listed the Democratic members of Congress who voted against the deal — such as Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Steve Israel — and stated whether or not they were Jewish and what percentage of their constituents were Jewish. The Times was heavily criticized for the graphic. In response to the outcry, the Times edited the graphic, removing the column labeled “Jewish?” that stated whether or not each legislator was Jewish.” [PoliticoMediaWashPost] • “The N.Y. Times is wrong to equate Judaism with Iran deal opposition” by Ron Kampeas [JewishJournal]

On The Hill: “Democrats Hand Victory to Obama on Iran Nuclear Deal” by Jennifer Steinhauer: “A procedural vote fell two short of the 60 needed to break a Democratic filibuster… House Republicans were already scrambling Thursday to find ways to undercut the accord and maintain or restore sanctions against Iran. “This debate is far from over and, frankly, it’s just beginning,” said Speaker John A. Boehner.” [NYTimesReuters• “Behind Pelosi’s Iran deal campaign” [Politico] • “How the White House kept Democrats from killing the Iran deal” [CNN• “Sanctions Debate Emerges From Shadow of Iran Nuclear Accord” [NYTimes]

From Tuesday: “Finally, in a surprise, Cory Booker said that he would likely object if Democratic leaders tried to use a filibuster to block a vote in the Senate on this accord. “I can’t imagine how my Democratic colleagues and I would not allow this to come to a vote,” Booker said.” [NJ]

Howard Kohr emailed activists yesterday: “The U.S. House of Representatives will vote tomorrow on a resolution of approval for the proposed nuclear deal with Iran. Urge them to consider the historic ramifications of this vote and oppose the resolution of approval.” — “A resolution approving the deal is expected to fail in the GOP-controlled House Friday.” [WSJ• “House conservatives may end up in court to kill Iran deal” [PowerPost]

DEEP DIVE: “Influential Pro-Israel Group Suffers Stinging Political Defeat” by Julie Hirschfeld Davis: ““They will be able to recoup, but it is inescapable that there will be stocktaking,” said Dennis B. Ross… AIPAC now faces a debate within its ranks about how to respond to the defeat, whether by exacting a political price from lawmakers — all of them Democrats — who defied its wishes and supported the Iran deal, or moving swiftly to mend fences with lawmakers and White House officials angered by the group’s efforts to kill the deal.” [NYTimes]

Jonathan Tobin: “Partisan Democrats, Not AIPAC Mistakes, Decided Iran Deal Fight” [Commentary]

Dennis Ross and David Makovsky: “It’s Time for Congress to Come Together on Iran: The Nuclear deal can’t be defeated. But it can be toughened with smart bipartisan action.” [Politico]

Reps. Steve Israel and Sandy Levin: “Two Jewish congressmen on the post-deal environment” [TheHill]

Charles Krauthammer: “The Iran charade on Capitol Hill” [WashPost]

HAPPENING TODAY: At 11:45am, the Hudson Institute hosts a panel on the IAEA Side Agreements featuring remarks from Rep. Mike Pompeo, along with panelists David Albright, Omri Ceren, Michael Doran, and Lee Smith. [Event]

Noah Pollak tweets: “Next vote on the Iran deal: November 8th, 2016” [Twitter]

2016 WATCH: Yesterday, Jeb Bush’s campaign hosted a luncheon for top Jewish donors with former President George W. Bush in NYC. Donors included Jay Lefkowitz, Yitz Applbaum, Ken Abramowitz, Cheryl Halperin, Scott Cohen, Ken Bialkin, George Klein, Ken Mehlman, and Morris Wolfson. • Marc Lasry helped Hillary fundraise in Milwaukee last night [Fox6] • “Bernie Sanders Is Spending Rosh Hashanah at Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University” [Bloomberg]

Review: “In 5775, the White House met with Jewish leaders a ton of times” by Jared Sichel: It was a busy Hebrew calendar year indeed for the Obama administration’s outreach efforts to American Jews, with at least 48 events, or an average of about one every week… “A lot had to do with the Iran deal,” said Matt Nosanchuk, an official in the White House’s Office of Public Engagement, and a White House liaison to the Jewish community, “And, you know, with concerns that have been voiced by some in the Jewish community regarding the U.S.-Israel relationship.” Full list [JewishInsider]

**Good Friday 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: “Patrick Drahi tops Forbes’ Israel billionare list” [Globes] • “Robert Atchinson and Phillip Gross’ Hedge Fund’s Radical Idea: Performance Guaranteed or Your Money Back” [WSJ] • “As fortunes fade, Glencore moguls prepare to up their bets” [Reuters• “Long Island palace once home to billionaire fertilizer mogul Tamir Sapir wants $100M” [DailyNewsWSJ] • “David Marx offering underwhelms as Tel Aviv braces for Jeff Sutton’s massive Wharton debt issuance” [RealDeal• Startup Spotlight: Chana Schottenstein’s Green Orchard — smoothie subscription box [Forbes]

STARTUP NATION: “How Israeli Startups Can Scale” by Jeff Bussgang and Omri Stern: “It is time for more Israeli entrepreneurs to swing for the fences. Building big companies means Israeli entrepreneurs should pack their bags and move to a large market early, partner with American VCs, continue to lead the company through the mid-to-late stages, and focus on building a culture. In our data set, we found over 100 companies that have the potential to become unicorns and decacorns.” [HBR]

BDS Fail: “Advocates of Israel Boycott Dismayed by Colbert’s Hummus Ad” by Robert Mackey: “While most of Mr. Colbert’s viewers were quite likely unaware of any political implications of the tongue-in-cheek endorsement, fans who support a Palestinian-led campaign to pressure Israel through boycotts, divestment and sanctions, or B.D.S., were dismayed by the gag. The hummus, which is produced in the United States, has been subject to calls for a boycott because it is made in a joint venture between PepsiCo and the Strauss Group, an Israeli food company.” [NYTimes]

“Mariah Carey and the Tragedy of the SodaStream Debate” by Adam Chandler: “On Thursday, Mariah Carey made a trip to the new SodaStream plant in southern Israel. Carey hadn’t visited to launch a signature SodaStream line called DreamBubbler, but rather to advocate for coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians.” [TheAtlantic]

Spotlight: “Israeli Dove: Give Putin a Chance” by James Kirchick: “Yossi Beilin was once the Jewish state’s progressive justice minister. Now he’s pushing a ‘two-state solution’ for Ukraine, under the auspices of a pro-Putin think tank.” [DailyBeast]

CAMPUS BEAT: “Saudi Businessman Gives $10M for Islamic Law Center at Yale” by Michael Melia: “Abdallah S. Kamel made the award after meetings with university representatives including Yale President Peter Salovey. Islamic law, or Shariah, carries weight in the legal code of most Muslim countries. Movements to expand its influence, including in areas of the West, have been controversial in part because some interpretations have been used to justify intolerance and harsh punishments.” [AP]

TALK OF OUR NATION: “Our public schools have few Jews left. We should let everyone go to school on Jewish holidays.” by Mark Oppenheimer: “Sure, there are good reasons—in a limited number of cities—to cancel school for religious holidays. But in many cities, including my own, the tradition is outdated and absurd. New Haven once had high numbers of Jewish teachers or students, but it no longer does.” [TabletMag]

“Steadied by Faith After a Humbling Loss” by David Gregory: “I’ve spent a career in journalism questioning others, and yet it was three questions asked of me that pushed me to figure out, as everyone must at some point: What do I believe, fundamentally, about life and the world? The first question came, however unusually, from a president of the United States.” [WSJ]

SPORTS BLINK: “Who’s New England’s most beloved hero: Tom Brady? Or his lawyer?” by Dan Wetzel: “Jeffrey Kessler came to the NFL opener like some conquering hero and joined in the celebration that everyone else arrived here for – something akin to a religious revival.” [Yahoo]

DESSERT: Headline — “Pot-Infused Jewish Foods Being Readied For Colorado Cannabis Shops” [Food&WineGrubStreet]

Yitz Applbaum on the Wine of the Week: “I suspect that over time I will tell many stories about my visits to the Carmel winery. A wonderful wine produced by Carmel is the Limited Edition Cabernet Sauvignon. The 2010 is showing beautifully. Elegant, soft, subtle and earthy, the wine is made from 65% Cabernet and the rest is a blend of Petit Verdot and Merlot. Aged for approximately 15 months in French Oak this wine is immediately approachable. I would drink this wine with lamb, a meaty fish, or perhaps a spicy cheese.” [Carmel]

WEEKEND BIRTHDAYS: Avital Chizhik Goldschmidt… Yehiel Kalish… Janis Kohlenberg… Idan Raichel… Eytan Laor… Jeff Pulver… Randy Schoenberg… Rabbi Mayer May… Kelly Stein… Sara Greenberg… Orrie Wilner… Bob Blumenfeld… David Behmoaras… Larry Mizel… Roxana Pourshalimi…

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