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Jewish Casino Tycoon Sheldon Adelson, Kingmaker in the Republican Party Camp


Here follows two articles on the incredible political influence in the US of a totally non-electable, especially shady, Jewish businessman - Sheldon Adelson - a man consequently working for Israel's interests:


 


 

Mogul’s Latest Foray Courts Jews for the G.O.P.

By Jeff Zeleny

New York Times, July 25, 2012




An ad by the Republican Jewish Coalition, which is backed by the billionaire Sheldon Adelson. 
Credit: Republican Jewish Coalition

 

WASHINGTON  A Republican group backed by the casino magnate Sheldon Adelson is starting a new effort in battleground states to win over Jewish voters who could be persuaded to turn away from President Obama and support Mitt Romney.

The group, the Republican Jewish Coalition, plans to begin a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign in the coming weeks called “My Buyer’s Remorse,” targeting voters in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, aides said. The campaign uses testimonials from people who say they regret supporting Mr. Obama because of his economic policies and his posture toward Israel, in hopes of cutting into the wide advantage Democrats have held over Republicans among Jewish voters.

It is the latest foray into the election by Mr. Adelson, a staunch supporter of Israel who has vowed to spend as much as $100 million to defeat Mr. Obama. It marks an escalation of the partisan politics over Middle East policy and represents an emerging Republican strategy of highlighting voters who supported Mr. Obama four years ago but are now expressing disappointment, while signaling to others that they are not alone in shifting their allegiances.

Mr. Adelson and other members of the group’s board have pledged at least $6.5 million to build a comprehensive list of Jewish voters and to wage a word-of-mouth campaign, amplified through social media and television advertising.

The intensified pursuit of Jewish voters is coming into sharper view as Mr. Romney leaves on a trip that will take him to Israel this weekend. It is a closely watched visit, especially given the often-tense relations between Mr. Obama and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has known Mr. Romney for three decades.

Mr. Adelson has emerged as potentially the largest single donor in American politics this year. After initially backing Newt Gingrich in the Republican primary race, Mr. Adelson eased his skepticism of Mr. Romney, and his support has steadily grown.

In May, Mr. Adelson and Mr. Romney held a private meeting in Las Vegas, and aides said the two men have communicated occasionally since then. In June, Mr. Adelson and his wife each gave $5 million to a pro-Romney “super PAC.” His support for Israel aligns him with other influential Republican constituencies, including evangelical Christians, who see Mr. Obama as failing to support Israel sufficiently.

The fight for the Jewish vote is more of a hunt-and-peck search for disgruntled voters, considering that Mr. Obama won more than 70 percent of votes among Jews in 2008, according to exit polls. But with an estimated 600,000 Jewish voters in Florida, a critical swing state, Democratic leaders said they were not taking the constituency for granted, and they acknowledged a need to increase enthusiasm among Jews before November.

“They figure if they shave off a few points here and a few points there in the Jewish population through lying and distortions, they can win,” said Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee. “But they can’t dress themselves up to be something appealing to the Jewish community when they aren’t.”

The Republican Jewish Coalition, the party’s leading outreach group for Jewish voters, has spent months developing a campaign to find like-minded voters in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, the three swing states with the largest Jewish populations. It is the most extensive electoral effort undertaken by the group.


Sheldon Adelson has vowed to
spend as much as $100 million
to defeat the president. 

Credit:
Jerome Favre/Bloomberg News

“We don’t need to get a majority of the vote to win,” said Matt Brooks, executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition. “When we take votes away from Democrats, we are taking votes from a key part of their constituency.”

A Gallup poll of voters from June 1 to July 22 showed that Mr. Obama held a lead over Mr. Romney among Jewish voters of 67 percent to 25 percent. They said they strongly supported liberal issues that traditionally align with Democrats, including abortion rights, same-sex marriage and an overhaul of immigration laws.

But if Mr. Romney won 25 percent of the Jewish vote, it would be the best showing by a Republican candidate in more than two decades, which could be especially important in swing states, where the margin of victory could be narrow. Four years ago, Senator John McCain won about 21 percent of the Jewish vote.

The advertising campaign features a testimonial from Michael Goldstein, 48, a community college administrator from New Jersey, who said he enthusiastically supported Mr. Obama’s candidacy but became disillusioned by his administration. A lifelong Democrat, he said he was planning to support Mr. Romney by casting his first vote for a Republican in a presidential race.

“I was enamored with Obama,” Mr. Goldstein said in an interview. “I thought he was sharp, intelligent and brought a new sense of wonder to politics. The fact that we were helping elect the first African-American president of the United States made me very proud, but I don’t believe anything he says anymore. I go more by his actions than by what he says.”

Mr. Goldstein said he gradually became disenchanted with Mr. Obama when his promises to change Washington did not come to pass. He said he was particularly incensed by the administration’s stance toward Israel, particularly the president’s view that the 1967 borders should be a starting point for negotiations for a two-state peace solution. He said he also believed that Mr. Obama showed disrespect to Mr. Netanyahu.

It remains an open question how many voters share the views of Mr. Goldstein, who conceded that some of his frustrations at Mr. Obama were also a result of what he saw as the president’s failure to uphold liberal principles on gun control and some social issues. But he said that his discontent was strong enough that he would cast a vote for Mr. Romney and that he intended to campaign aggressively in Pennsylvania.

“It doesn’t take a lot of buyer’s remorse to potentially shift the outcome,” said Ari Fleischer, a member of the Republican Jewish Coalition’s board and a former press secretary to President George W. Bush.

While the Obama campaign and the Democratic Party have increased their outreach, leaders of several Jewish organizations dismissed the possibility that the Republicans could make significant inroads in the November election.

“There is a very large chunk of the Jewish community that is very Democratic that can’t be eaten into,” said Mik Moore, founder of the Jewish Council for Education and Research. “There is a fight for maybe 10-15 percent, but nobody is underestimating the impact that the massive independent spending can have on the campaign.”

Jeremy Ben-Ami, the president of J Street, a Jewish lobbying group in Washington that favors Democratic candidates, said the effort by Mr. Adelson and the Republican Jewish Coalition would fall short.

“Every single number indicates there is simply no such thing as a Jewish problem for the president,” Mr. Ben-Ami said. “The people who vote only on Israel didn’t vote for Obama last time and know who they are voting for already.”

 

 


 

Jewish Dems’ call on GOP to cut off Adelson’s giving revives civility talk

By Ron Kampeas

Jewish Telegraphic Agency, July 10, 2012



Sheldon Adelson, right, seen here with then-President George W. Bush and Israeli President Shimon Peres at a Jerusalem
conference in May 2008, is at the center of controversy over contributions earmarked for Republican candidates.
(Nati Shohat /FLASH90)



WASHINGTON (JTA) — Sheldon Adelson, whose cash and rhetoric has hit candidates hard this election cycle, just got swiped himself.

The National Jewish Democratic Council wants Republicans, including presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney, to stop taking “dirty money” from Adelson because of allegations surrounding his lucrative casino properties in Macau, China.

The “dirty money” jibe, in turn, has seen the NJDC slammed with charges of “dirty politics,” and not just from Republicans. Prominent civil rights attorney Alan Dershowitz and the Anti-Defamation League’s Abraham Foxman also have called on the Jewish Democratic group to stand down.

Adelson, who was a major backer of Newt Gingrich’s failed GOP presidential campaign, has given tens of millions of dollars this year to conservative SuperPACs, political action committees permitted by law to raise limitless amounts of money but which may not work directly with a candidate.

The NJDC call followed revelations last week of allegations in a lawsuit filed by Steven Jacobs, a casino executive who was fired by Adelson in 2010, claiming that Adelson approved of allowing prostitutes to operate in his Macau casinos.

In a petition drive sent to its supporters, the NJDC suggested that the prostitution allegation was part of a pattern of bad behavior by Adelson. The NJDC will not release the number of signatures, but the petition likely will be sent to the Republican Party and the Romney campaign, according to David Harris,  the Democratic group’s president and CEO.

“It’s well known that Adelson makes tremendous sums of money through his casinos in China which — according to 2008 Republican presidential candidate Senator John McCain (AZ) — means that Chinese ‘foreign money’ (to quote McCain) is flooding our political system,” the petition said. “But this week, reports surfaced that in addition to his anti-union and allegedly corrupt business practices, Adelson ‘personally approved’ of prostitution in his Macau casinos.”

Adelson’s spokesman did not return a request for comment for this article.

Matt Brooks, the director of the Republican Jewish Coalition, said the NJDC’s call was “disgusting” because it was based on allegations in a lawsuit filed by a disgruntled ex-employee.

“Setting aside their partisan agenda, the NJDC should be ashamed of itself for attacking someone who has done more for the Jewish community and Jewish philanthropy than anyone in recent history,” Brooks said, citing Adelson’s major contributions to the Birthright Israel program that brings Jewish youth to Israel, and to Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial museum.

Adelson is a multimillion-dollar donor to both efforts, and also is a major backer of the RJC. 

“If this is proven to be nothing more than rantings of an employee in legal battle, NJDC is going to have a lot of egg on its face,” Brooks added. “If they were truly mensches about it, they would wait until it is adjudicated.”

Over the weekend Dershowitz, who pointed out in his column that he is a Democrat, and Foxman, also weighed in.

“Harris has apparently credited this claim even though no evidence has been submitted to support it and no finding has been made by any court,” Dershowitz wrote in a column cross-posted on the Huffington Post and The Jerusalem Post. “Has he never heard of ‘due process’ or the ‘presumption of innocence?’ ”

Foxman likened the attack to those in 2010 on a major Democratic funder, George Soros, who is Jewish and had been falsely accused of being a “collaborator” during the Holocaust against evidence that he had endured it as a youngster forced into a false identity.

“I was flabbergasted,” said Foxman, who had reached out to news outlets, including JTA, after reading of the NJDC petition. “We knew that this campaign would get somewhat extreme, but for the Jewish element in the Democratic Party to resort to character assassination I think is pretty sad.”

Adelson is not a stranger to being on both sides of tough attacks that border on the personal. His money helped to keep alive for several months Gingrich’s recent presidential campaign and funded attack ads that depicted Romney as out of touch with the needs of working people. Adelson and his wife, Miriam, have pledged to do the same for Romney in his battle against President Obama.

In March, in an impromptu address to a session at TribeFest, a Jewish Federations of North America event for Jewish youth held in Las Vegas at the Adelson-owned Venetian, Adelson shocked some attendees by mocking Obama and likening the president to a baby, according to several of those present.

Harris said the charges in the NJDC petition were fair because he said they were based on a “pattern” of allegations, although none have yet to be proven. Adelson is under federal investigation for bribing Chinese officials.

Harris acknowledged Adelson’s good works. “One can do something good and bad; this shouldn’t be incomprehensible,” he said.

He dismissed charges of character assassination, noting efforts by the RJC and others to depict Obama as implacably hostile to Israel, as opposed to delineating differences on policy between two candidates who otherwise favor a strong U.S.-Israel relationship.

“None of this is couched in terms of disagreement on policy,” Harris said. “It is couched in personally the most hateful ways towards these people.”

He noted that Brooks in a blog post last year wrote that “members of the President’s inner circle seethe with antagonism toward Israel’s democratically elected leader.” Brooks, in his blog post, was writing about reports in the media at the time describing frustrations by senior Obama administration officials with what they perceived as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s lack of respect for the president. One report in Bloomberg said that the then-defense secretary, Robert Gates, believed Netanyahu to be “ungrateful.”

At the time, Brooks’ attack was the kind of broadside that prompted the ADL and the American Jewish Committee in a joint appeal to call on parties “to put Israel ahead of politics” and not to sow division. Brooks and other conservatives condemned the ADL-AJC call as an attempt to silence their criticism of Obama.

The Jewish Council of Public Affairs made civility a theme of its most recent colloquium in May. Its director, Rabbi Steve Gutow, declined to comment to JTA on the latest fracas involving Adelson.

The Jewish Federations of North America, in a rare comment on electoral politics, cited a JCPA pledge that Harris had signed in its call on the NJDC to stand down from its attack.

“To condemn a man based on unsubstantiated charges violates our American and Jewish values,” said a statement signed by the JFNA leadership. “It also breaches the Jewish Council for Public Affairs’ Civility Statement, which was signed by both the NJDC and JFNA. That document commits us to ‘respectful dialogue’ and ‘to treat others with decency and honor and to set ourselves as models for civil discourse, even when we disagree with each other.”

The pledge was signed by individuals, not groups. In addition to Harris, Brooks had signed it.

Asked if he would consider reissuing the joint ADL-AJC appeal, Foxman laughed and said, “Maybe we should send it out again and get clobbered like we did last time.”


 




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