‘It’s a war’ for the future of the Democratic Party, says Sanders of AIPAC’s Super PAC
Senator Bernie Sanders doubled down on his criticism of the US Israel Public Affairs Committee and its newly created super PAC on Friday, recounting The New York Times that the powerful anti-Palestinian lobby group’s incursion into the Democratic primaries threatens the future of the party and American democracy.
Like Common dreams reported this week, AIPAC’s super PAC, United Democracy Project (UDP), is spending big in several Democratic primary races to defeat progressives who support Palestinian rights and criticize the billions of dollars in U.S. funding that goes in each year. to the Israeli army.
“It’s not just about Israel – everything is at stake in these elections. The future of our democracy, abortion rights and our ability to avert climate catastrophe are all at stake this year.”
AIPAC’s spending in key races in North Carolina, Texas, Pennsylvania and other states serves the group’s goal “to create a two-party system, Democrats and Republicans, in which both parties are sensitive to the needs of American businesses and class of billionaires,” Sanders told the Time.
“This is a war for the future of the Democratic Party,” added the independent senator from Vermont. “They are doing everything they can to destroy the progressive movement in this country.”
The UDP has focused much of its spending this primary season on the race between progressive Pennsylvania State Representative Summer Lee and former Republican lawyer Steve Irwin, pouring $2.3 million into ad campaigns, including one accusing Lee of being disloyal to the Democratic Party, only to have Lee narrowly defeat his opponent.
The attack ad sparked outrage from progressives, including Sanders, who pointed out that the group had also donated to dozens of Republicans who opposed certification of the 2020 presidential election results.
“Why would any organization criticize someone like Summer Lee for not being a strong enough Democrat when he himself supported far-right Republicans?” Sanders told the Time.
The UDP also spent $2 billion to help North Carolina State Senator Valerie Foushee defeat Nida Allam, a former Sanders organizer, and is currently spending $1.8 billion to help the Democratic Rep. right Henry Cuellar to retain his seat in the 28th District of Texas.
Cuellar is the only Democrat in the House who supports forcing Americans to continue unwanted pregnancies and is a staunch opponent of the Green New Deal, while his challenger, immigration lawyer Jessica Cisneros, supports the right abortion, climate action and Palestinian rights.
To The nation On Friday, Sunrise Movement organizer Ezra Oliff-Lieberman wrote that as the UDP struggles to defeat progressive Democrats, “the damage to our democracy they are willing to accept along the way are shameful and revealing”.
“It’s not just about Israel – everything is at stake in these elections,” Oliff-Lieberman wrote. “The future of our democracy, abortion rights and our ability to avert climate catastrophe are all at stake this year.”
AIPAC and its allies are playing an “extremely dangerous game”, added historian Jacob Remes, by “using Republican money to buy Democratic primaries for candidates who oppose reproductive freedom, clean energy and universal health care, all to ‘support Israel'” .
Remes added that critics like Sanders, who is Jewish, threaten AIPAC and other pro-Israel groups because they “actually represent the majority of American Jews (especially Jewish American Democrats), so they expose AIPAC as actually representing Republicans and Christian Zionists”.
The Progressive Congressional Campaign Committee (PCCC) applauded Sanders for exposing AIPAC and UDP’s efforts to misinform voters about progressive candidates.
“It is time for Democratic leaders to speak out and condemn this,” the PCCC said.