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Word on the Street: AIPAC’s Money vs. J Street’s Majority

Jeremy Ben-Ami[BLOG]

We knew this would be one hell of a fight–but as I learned a long time ago, when the truth is on your side, it is more than OK to be David facing off against Goliath.

And wow–here we are and here we go!

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We’re still in Round One–just ten days since Congress began its 60-day review of President Obama and our allies’ nuclear agreement to keep Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, but AIPAC and its allies have already pledged over $30 million to kill the deal.

If this sounds like an exorbitant figure for only a two-month campaign, fasten your seatbelts–they’re only getting warmed up. That’s because a large majority of Americans knows better and continue to back the pro-Israel agreement that America took years to negotiate. Even scarier for the incredulous opposition: among American Jews, that support is even stronger.

Let me repeat that fact which you will never hear repeated on Fox News: Our latest pollconfirms that 60 percent of American Jews support the deal, even more than the 56 percent of Americans overall who agree with us.

So get ready–when the other side doesn’t have the facts on their side and they don’t have the country on their side–well, they’re going to get ugly. And it is about to get expensive!

Start with “the ugly!” Republican Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, this week accused President Obama of “marching the Israelis to the door of the oven.” Senator Tom Cotton compared the Secretary of State to Pontius Pilate.

They say these horrible things because they’re losing–the 20-point margin in favor that we found in our poll aligns closely with the 18-point margin found in last week’s LA Jewish Journal survey, as well as the 18-point margin from our poll last month, and other polls conducted before the deal was reached.

Why? Because we represent the mainstream of pro-Israel opinion in this country, while AIPAC and other Jewish organizations who rushed to oppose the agreement are far out of step with the majority of American Jews.

So you bet they’ll double down on using money to undermine the majority.

As for you and me–we’re in this fight because we know that our opponents are not only out of line with pro-Israel opinion, they’re also completely wrong–the Iran agreement will make Israel safer, and more and more Israeli security experts agree with us.

Don’t take my word for it–dozens of former Israeli security professionals–like former Shin Bet head Ami Ayalon and former Mossad chief Efraim Halevy–have come forward to praise elements of the agreement and question the prime minister’s decision to lobby Congress against it.

They are part of a growing consensus among American national security and arms control experts that this agreement can help to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran, while its rejection by Congress could lead to another war in the Middle East.

These are the voices that Congress needs to hear from over the next two months.

And we need you to amplify their voices.

We can’t compete with the opposition in terms of money, but we have the people, the experts and the facts on our side.

And we’ve launched a nationwide campaign to make sure that Members of Congress hear from the real pro-Israel community–the one that AIPAC is trying to silence.

Take ActionTell Congress that the majority of American Jews wants them to approve this agreement.

We can’t do it without you — and our country needs us to do it.



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