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October 17, 1986 - Image 28

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-10-17

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

AMERICA'S STAMP STOP

AND

Key Election Races
Have Israel Overtones

MORRIS J. AMITAY

Special to The Jewish News

/—•

W nth the Congres-
sional elections on
the horizon, the
pro-Israel community is
watching a number of Senate
races with great interest. By
now, some certain winners or
losers have emerged but a
number of key Senate elec-
tion contests are still too
close to call.
In California, with approx-
imately 800,000 Jews, Alan
Cranston, one of Israel's most
active long-time supporters.
is seeking a fourth term. Al-
though Ed Zschau, the Re-
publican challenger, is
mounting an expensive chal-
lenge, Cranston has put the
two-term representative on
the defensive. By fingering
Zschau as a "flip-flopper" on
issues such as Israel,
Cranston is hoping voters
will look at substantive is-
sues over glossy commercials.
Zschau's record in Congress
on issues relating to Israel is -
very poor — he initiated an
amendment to cut foreign aid
to Israel, voted against the
resolution opposing the Saudi
arms sale, and did not oppose
the Jordan arms sale. In light
of this, Zschau's recent visit
to Israel has been called
sheer "chutzpah" by
Cranston.
At this point Cranston is
ahead in the polls, but
California voters have a
well-deserved reputation for
unpredictability and
Cranston's re-election is by
no means assured.
In Idaho, one of the lesser
populated states, John Evans,
a popular governor with ex-
cellent positions regarding Is-
rael, has a better than even
chance of defeating the in-
cumbent Steve Symms, whose
overall record of support dur-
ing his six-year Senate term
and four House terms has
been poor. This race has at-
tracted national attention
and considerable Jewish sup-
port for Evans. With name
recognition high for both
candidates, a relatively few
undecided voters will decide
the outcome of what might be
the closest of all the 34 Se-
nate races Nov. 4.
In Oregon, Senator Bob
Packwood's prospects for re-
election improved markedly
when his Democratic chal-
lenger, Rep. Jim Weaver, was
forced to withdraw from the
race because of an ethics
committee investigation.
Weaver, whose record on
Israel-related issues was
poor, had been very critical of
Packwood's support for
foreign aid to Israel. The vet-
eran Packwood now faces
what many regard as only
token opposition from State
Rep. Richard Bauman, who
finished a distant third to
Weaver in the Democratic
primary last May. Packwood

has been one of the most out-
spoken and outstanding
friends of Israel over the
years.
In Pennsylvania, Arlen
Specter, one of two Jewish
senators up for re-election
this year and a down-the-line
supporter on the Foreign Op-
erations Appropriations Sub-
committee, will have a tough
re-election fight. Rep. Bob
Edgar, the Democratic
nominee, is waging a vigor-
ous campaign and the west-
ern Pennsylvania vote has
become the crucial
battleground. As Edgar's
name recognition increases,
the race will tighten up.
Another development
which chould adversely affect
Specter is the candidacy by
conservative Robert Smith, a
former GOP county chair-
man, as a far-right write-in
candidate, pulling votes away
from Specter.
In Wisconsin, Republican
Senator Bob Kasten is look-
ing stronger for re-election
than he did a few months
ago, and his approval rating
is up. Kasten's reputation as
an effective legislator has
kept him in good standing in
this traditionally liberal
state. As chairman of the Se-
nate Foreign Operations
Appropriations Subcommit-
tee, Kasten has played an ex-
tremely crucial role in setting
adequate levels of foreign aid
for Israel. His likely Demo-
cratic challenger, Ed Garvey,
has yet to prove he will be
very competitive.
Already, there have been
some good primary election
results from Georgia where
State Representative Julian
Bond's bid for a House seat
was thwarted by John Lewis,
a black civil rights leader
with strong ties to the Jewish
community. Bond has long
been antagonistic toward Is-
rael and sympathetic to the
PLO.
The 1986 congressional
elections are shaping up to
produce a net plus as far as
support for Israel in the U.S.
Congress is concerned. How-
ever, this will still depend to
a great extent on the Jewish
community's active involve-
ment in the political process
during the next few weeks.

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BRUCE
WEISS

Rally Supports
Terrorists

Tel Aviv (JTA) — An esti-
mated 6,000 Gush Emunim
members and supporters
marched through Jerusalem
streets to demonstrate out-
side Chief Rabbinate head-
quarters demanding
presidential pardons for
Jewish underground mem-
bers currently serving prison
sentences for violent crimes
against Arabs in the West
Bank.

26325 Twelve Mile Road
Southfield, Michigan 48034
10:00-5:30 Monday-Saturday

CUSTOM DESIGNED JEWELRY

in the Mayfair Shops at
Northwestern Highway.
1 0: 00 -8 : 30 Thursday

PHONE (313) 353-1424

31

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