One of the values being touted loudly at this year’s Values Voter Summit is U.S. support for Israel – Rep. Eric Cantor got the first standing ovation of the event when he said, “We have, and we always should, stand by Israel”– but observant Jews will be out of luck if they want to attend the whole conference. As the National Jewish Democratic Council points out in an email, this is the third Values Voter Summit in a row to be scheduled during the Jewish High Holy Days.
Even tomorrow’s panel on “Why Christians Should Support Israel” will take place on Yom Kippur, the holiest day on the Jewish calendar.
Conservatives have been aggressively targeting Jews recently by touting their pro-Israel positions. But what they continually fail to understand is that pro-Israel rhetoric only goes so far. Polling consistently shows that the sweeping majority of American Jews abhor the conservative domestic policy positions — particularly on social issues — that will be discussed this weekend. With this in mind, American conservatives should explain how they intend to make Jews feel welcome in a political movement that advances an agenda opposed by most in the Jewish community and continually holds its flagship conference on the Jewish High Holidays.