(May 17, 2019 / JNS) In an interview published on Friday, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti appeared to sound the alarm on the anti-Israel sentiment among some of his fellow Democrats.
When asked by The Jerusalem Post in Israel, where he was for the week along with four other U.S. mayors on a trip organized by the American Jewish Committee, whether Israel has “lost the Democrats,” Garcetti, whose mother is Jewish, responded: “I would not overstate it, but, yes, it should be a concern. As a Democratic Jew, I think it is incumbent upon us to have dialogue with a new generation of leaders who may not know history. But I wouldn’t overstate things and say that Democrats suddenly don’t support Israel.”
Garcetti blamed both the United States and Israel for making issues surrounding the Jewish state so partisan, saying that American and Israeli politicians should “be interfering less in each other’s domestic politics.”
“You might hate Bibi [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu], but you can love Israel,” he said. “Or you might hate [U.S. President Donald Trump], but you can still see the importance of this [his relationship with Netanyahu],” he said.
However, he added, “I do think that [the Trump-Netanyahu relationship] has enabled this to be less about two nations and more about two people.”
In response to Trump saying in March that the Democrats have become “an anti-Israel party and anti-Jewish party,” Garcetti said that it was “offensive to me as a Democrat and as a Jew, because if I want to play that game, there are plenty of things that you can point out that he has done or said or enabled, but I would never do that because this is an area I think should be nonpartisan.”