Dems clash behind closed doors as Obama blames 'donor' pressure for Senate move toward Iran sanctions

President Obama, meeting with Senate Democrats at their retreat in Baltimore, stirred up anger by implying that “donors” (meaning Jews) were the reason why the Senate is pursuing an Iran sanctions bill.  At least one Democrat, Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey, stated that he took “personal offense.”  The New York Times reported:

Their face-off occurred behind closed doors at the Hilton in Baltimore, where the two-day Senate Democratic Issues Conference was taking place. The president spoke to the senators for nearly two hours, and several people said he was well received by members of his party as he vowed to remain on the political offensive during the final two years of his presidency.

 His exchange with Mr. Menendez occurred near the end of a question-and-answer session after Senator Angus King of Maine — an independent who caucuses with the Democrats — asked for an update to the nuclear talks.

According to one of the senators and another person who was present, the president urged lawmakers to stop pursuing sanctions, saying such a move would undermine his authority and could derail the talks. Mr. Obama also said that such a provocative action could lead international observers to blame the Americans, rather than the Iranians, if the talks collapsed before the June 30 deadline.

The president said he understood the pressures that senators face from donors and others, but he urged the lawmakers to take the long view rather than make a move for short-term political gain, according to the senator. Mr. Menendez, who was seated at a table in front of the podium, stood up and said he took “personal offense.”

Mr. Menendez told the president that he had worked for more than 20 years to curb Iran’s nuclear ambitions and had always been focused on the long-term implications. Mr. Menendez also warned the president that sanctions could not be imposed quickly if Congress waited to act and the talks failed, according to two people who were present.

This shows, as Richard Baehr has pointed out, that the president subscribes to the discredited work of John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt blaming "the Israel Lobby” for its alleged malign influence on U.S. foreign policy.  This is a deeply anti-Semitic view, and one that the president feels free to express in a private meeting with his political allies.

Nonetheless, Jews still support Obama in greater percentages than almost any other group except blacks.

Hat tips: Lauri Regan, The Algemeiner

President Obama, meeting with Senate Democrats at their retreat in Baltimore, stirred up anger by implying that “donors” (meaning Jews) were the reason why the Senate is pursuing an Iran sanctions bill.  At least one Democrat, Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey, stated that he took “personal offense.”  The New York Times reported:

Their face-off occurred behind closed doors at the Hilton in Baltimore, where the two-day Senate Democratic Issues Conference was taking place. The president spoke to the senators for nearly two hours, and several people said he was well received by members of his party as he vowed to remain on the political offensive during the final two years of his presidency.

 His exchange with Mr. Menendez occurred near the end of a question-and-answer session after Senator Angus King of Maine — an independent who caucuses with the Democrats — asked for an update to the nuclear talks.

According to one of the senators and another person who was present, the president urged lawmakers to stop pursuing sanctions, saying such a move would undermine his authority and could derail the talks. Mr. Obama also said that such a provocative action could lead international observers to blame the Americans, rather than the Iranians, if the talks collapsed before the June 30 deadline.

The president said he understood the pressures that senators face from donors and others, but he urged the lawmakers to take the long view rather than make a move for short-term political gain, according to the senator. Mr. Menendez, who was seated at a table in front of the podium, stood up and said he took “personal offense.”

Mr. Menendez told the president that he had worked for more than 20 years to curb Iran’s nuclear ambitions and had always been focused on the long-term implications. Mr. Menendez also warned the president that sanctions could not be imposed quickly if Congress waited to act and the talks failed, according to two people who were present.

This shows, as Richard Baehr has pointed out, that the president subscribes to the discredited work of John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt blaming "the Israel Lobby” for its alleged malign influence on U.S. foreign policy.  This is a deeply anti-Semitic view, and one that the president feels free to express in a private meeting with his political allies.

Nonetheless, Jews still support Obama in greater percentages than almost any other group except blacks.

Hat tips: Lauri Regan, The Algemeiner