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October 17, 2003 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-10-17

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Proud To Be Jewish

to unite this country again around our shared values."
n average Joe he's not.
Like most Israelis, Lieberman supports a two-state solution
Joseph Lieberman is a U.S. senator from
to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict if credible Palestinian leader-
Connecticut. He's also on a mission to be the

Democratic nominee for president of the United
He said the Bush administration lacks an aggressive, contin-
States. Were he to succeed, he'd be the first Jewish president.
uing presence to bring a negotiated peace. He said the U.S.
That distinction isn't lost on Lieberman, even though he's
failed to seize the diplomatic moment during the terrorist
not running on a religious or ethnic platform..
"It is a moment in history" he said.
Arafat's diplomatic isolation and a buildup of the Palestinian
He said being Jewish is no longer a barrier to winning if
prime minister.
you measure up politically.
"I'm bold enough and confident enough to believe that I
Al Gore's running mate in 2000, Lieberman still remembers
have a unique opportunity and ability to mediate between the
what civil rights leader Rev. Jesse Jackson told
parties and bring about at least progress toward peace if not
him then: "When a barrier falls for one
peace itself," Lieberman said.
group in America, the doors of
Time will tell, but I don't believe that being Jewish
opportunity open wider for every
would make Lieberman irrelevant in the Arab world,
other American."
where he is known and respected.
And they do.
On the national front, Lieberman said America
Lieberman, 61, is competitive in
should pull back some of the Bush tax cuts to invest
the pre-primary polls I've seen. That
in under-funded priorities like homeland security and
foreshadows a near-level playing
ROBERT A. field for other good ethnic or minor-
first responder services like police and fire.
ity candidates for major public
another 9-11 type of attack," Lieberman said, serving
up a familiar Democratic refrain, but one that should-
Rind-raising is a worry, but he's in
n't be dismissed as political banter.
the race to win, Lieberman said on Oct. 7 at a West
Bloomfield fund-raiser hosted by Detroit Jewish News
Publisher Arthur Horwitz and his wife, Gina.
Draws Plaudits
During the event, which drew 85 guests, Lieberman reiter-
During his college days at Yale — he graduated with a law
ated his support for removing Saddam Hussein from power,
degree in 1967 — Lieberman joined the freedom rides
JARC'S 23rd Annual
but blasted President George W Bush's plans for post-war
inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. "The senator has a his-
Iraq. He criticized the president for not keeping the
tory that is significant to the African American com-
Fall Fundraiser
"main promise he made in 2002: that he would
munity," Rev. Wendell Anthony, the NAACP-Detroit
return honor and integrity to the White House."
chapter president told me after he met privately with
A U.S. senator since 1988, Lieberman is cam-
Lieberman at the Horwitzes.
paigning hard with an eye on his day of reckoning:
"He's special."
Tuesday, Feb. 3. Six primaries will be held that day.
Southfield attorney Marla Zwas, echoing a common
Michigan's primary is the week after.
sentiment among rally-goers, said she was eager to
Lieberman knows Jews don't just vote for Jews, or
meet a presidential hopeful who is proud to be a Jew.
just for Democrats. He's sincere, engaging and
"My kids are too young to understand this," she
thoughtful. And he will likely hang tough as the
said, "but I would be excited to one day tell them that
cash-draining primaries unmask the pretenders.
there was a candidate who was Jewish, who was not
Fisher Theater
embarrassed to be a Jew and who was committed to
Sunday, Nov. 2
Upwardly Mobile
Judaism openly."
John F. Kennedy inspired Lieberman politically.
I don't know if Joe Lieberman has enough cash to make it
1:30 pm & 7:30 pm
"I was 18 years old when he ran," Lieberman said. 'And
through the primaries, let alone take on a well-financed
S Tickets at www.jarc.org S
there was something in my head that said if a Roman
incumbent president who, from a Jewish perspective, is a
Catholic was elected president, somewhere doors were going
staunch friend of Israel.
or (248) 538-6610 x418
to open for me."
Should he get the Democratic nomination, Lieberman
State senator, state attorney general, U.S. senator, vice presi-
would have to overcome the nagging belief by some Jews that
Aoki 51/±1 . 1 0
dential candidate. "It's the miracle of America that I have the
it's the wrong time for a Jewish president, no matter how
( Ages 21 to 40 )
opportunity to run for president today," Lieberman said.
qualified he is. We'll see if Lieberman's message lingers. Also,
Lieberman and Bush are both pro-Israel. But the senator
Mamma's VIP Lounge 5-7 pm
Bush will get more of the Jewish vote this time.
says the comparison stops there.
Whatever your politics, Lieberman's run for president is
Fisher Building
"I'm running for president," Lieberman said, "because I don't
believe the current president is making America better. I think
Arthur Horwitz's parents are New Haven neighbors of
he's making it worse. I think he's compromising our values, our
Hadassah and Joe Lieberman; Arthur worked on Joe's success-
rights and our liberties."
ful first run for public office in 1970 against the state senate
Drawing on Bill Clinton's winning strategy in 1992 against
majority leader.
Bush's father, Lieberman said the president "has mismanaged it
At the rally he hosted, Horwitz said to the senator: "We're
in a way that has put us in the deepest debt we've ever been in."
coming up on the 350th anniversary of Jewish life in America.
The political moderate talked about great American issues
Everybody here recognizes that, in many ways, you are anoth-
like poverty, education, national security, jobs, health care, the
er dot on a 350-year continuum. Not only has America been
environment, retirement and international relations.
good to the Jewish community and other communities, but
'America is weaker at home and weaker around the world,"
the Jewish community has contributed so much to American
he said. "I'm running because I know I can do better. I want
0 For 34 years, helping people with 0
life, values and culture." ❑
disabilities be fully induded
in community life

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