Jewish Democrats Endorse Five Candidates in Midterms

JDCA gives nod to Senator Menendez and Levin, Manning, Slotkin and Wild in third round of endorsements

WASHINGTON — Today, the Jewish Democratic Council of America (JDCA) – the voice for Jewish Democrats representing socially liberal, pro-Israel values – has announced its third round of endorsements for the 2018 midterm elections.

JDCA is endorsing Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) for re-election, as well as House candidates in four other states: Mike Levin for California District 49, Kathy Manning for North Carolina District 13, Elissa Slotkin for Michigan District 8 and Susan Wild for Pennsylvania District 7.

These candidates, along with those previously endorsed, all support the Jewish values that JDCA promotes, and are running in a state or district where the Jewish community could play a meaningful role in determining the outcome of the race.

“In reviewing races nationally, JDCA considers in particular those Democratic candidates who share Jewish values. We also prioritize those districts and states where our support could have the greatest impact,” said Halie Soifer, JDCA Executive Director. “Each of these candidates is looking very strong as they enter a competitive election, and we believe they will win in November.”

“In the coming months, JDCA will be announcing additional endorsements of Democratic candidates, as we aim to build on growing momentum for change and toward Democratic victories in November. Our goal is to flip the House and the Senate to Democratic control, and lay the groundwork for a Democratic win in 2020. In addition, we aim to hold President Trump and Republicans in Congress accountable for their policies and actions, which are not aligned with Jewish and Democratic values.”

Menendez, first elected to the Senate in 2006, serves as Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which he previously chaired. In this role, he has been an outspoken foreign policy and national security leader in the Senate, and a strong supporter of Israel. He also has been a leading advocate for immigration reform, minority rights, LGBTQ protections and gun reform. The Cook Political Report considers the race “Likely Democratic,” as Menendez faces Republican challenger Bob Hugin.

Levin, an attorney specializing in environmental and energy issues, is running for an open seat, currently held by retiring Republican Rep. Darrell Issa. As a champion of access to affordable healthcare and public education, Levin advocates for both “Medicare for All” and “College for All.“ Levin has stressed his support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and has talked about the anti-Semitism his family has experienced. Levin is facing Republican Diane Harkey, a former member of the California State Assembly, in a race that Cook considers “Leans Democratic.”

Manning, an attorney, community leader, and business owner, is the first woman to chair the Jewish Federations of North America and a founding board member of Prizmah, a network of Jewish day schools of all denominations. Manning is running on a platform prioritizing affordable and accessible healthcare, jobs, education, and training to prepare people for tomorrow’s economy. Manning is challenging freshman Rep. Ted Budd, a member of the Freedom Caucus and a strong ally of President Trump. Her race is labeled as “Lean Republican.”

Slotkin is a national security expert and former government official who served three deployments in Iraq with the CIA. She previously worked at the CIA, White House, State Department, and Department of Defense in the Bush and Obama administrations. Most recently Slotkin served as Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security, where she helped to finalize the ten-year, $38 billion Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the U.S. and Israel, as well as the sale of the F-35 fighter jet to Israel, and partnership on missile defense programs including Iron Dome. Slotkin, who has received former Vice President Biden’s endorsement, is challenging two-term incumbent Rep. Mike Bishop, who has championed President Trump’s agenda in the House. Cook has rated her race as a “Toss Up.”

Wild, who served as an attorney and the first female Solicitor of the City of Allentown, shepherded in a new era of accountability and transparency in her community as a leader. As a candidate, she has prioritized preserving Social Security and Medicare, protecting the environment, strengthening of the Affordable Care Act, and making college debt free. Wild, served on the board of her local Jewish Federation, and is running against Republican Marty Nothstein, to fill the seat vacated by retired Rep. Charlie Dent. Cook puts her Pennsylvanian district as “Leans Democratic.”

“Jewish voters will be crucial in electing these candidates and ensuring that Democrats take back the House and possibly the Senate in November,” said Ron Klein, JDCA chairman. “Democrats are running on issues that energize our community, among them access to affordable health care and education, the defense of women’s rights, the protection of our civil liberties and democratic institutions, and strong support of Israel. JDCA is proud to support these five candidates, who are all extremely strong and represent our values.” said Klein.

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The Jewish Democratic Council of America (JDCA) serves as the voice for Jewish Democrats and the socially liberal, pro-Israel values that Jewish voters hold dear. By educating candidates and the electorate, energizing the Jewish vote, and collaborating with organizations that are aligned with Jewish Democratic positions, JDCA promotes like-minded candidates and elected officials and embraces a platform that is grounded in fairness, integrity, the Jewish value of Tikkun Olam and a strong U.S.-Israel relationship.