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RJC withdraws its only endorsement of a GOP primary challenger over racist tweets

Pro-Israel America also backtracks on support for challenger to Rep. Thomas Massie


Todd McMurtry and his wife, Cari.

Todd McMurtry, who was the first congressional challenger to receive the backing of the Republican Jewish Coalition, lost the group’s endorsement after a few short weeks due to a series of controversial past tweets. 

Details: McMurtry is challenging libertarian Rep. Thomas Massie in the June 23 Republican primary for Kentucky’s 4th congressional district. The RJC announced last month it was backing McMurtry as a result of Massie’s troubling voting record on Israel, Holocaust education legislation and his bucking of party leadership on coronavirus relief matters. But following the revelation of tweets by McMurty containing racist tropes and anti-immigrant sentiments, the Jewish group withdrew its endorsement.

Quote: “The RJC has consistently spoken out against hate, bigotry and racism,” the organization tweeted on Saturday. “As a result of troubling comments that have come to light by congressional candidate Todd McMurtry which don’t share our values or the values of the GOP, we are asking for a refund and withdrawing our PAC support.”

Pulling back: House Republican Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Rep. Michael Turner (R-OH) have also requested the return of their contributions to the McMurtry campaign. 

Losing support: Political action committee Pro-Israel America also endorsed McMurtry earlier this month, and then withdrew that endorsement last night. “We are concerned by Todd McMurtry’s statements that have come forward this week, as these don’t reflect our values,” the organization tweeted. “We are withdrawing our endorsement and requesting reimbursement for contributions from our PAC.”

McMurty’s response: In a statement to JI, McMurtry claimed he’s a victim of media bias. “My wife is Puerto Rican. My kids are bilingual. But the New York Times wants to call me a racist. That’s what they do to conservatives,” the candidate said. “Well, I’m not going to let them intimidate me. I’m going to vote for Kentucky, and in support of President Trump and Thomas Massie won’t.”

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