In the 2022 midterm election cycle, millions of pro-Israel dollars poured in trying to keep Pittsburgh-area Democrat Summer Lee off Capitol Hill.
She prevailed, though the situation could become tricky for the congresswoman in 2024 after she was one of 18 Democrats to vote against a resolution honoring Israel on its 75th birthday and encouraging the expansion of the Abraham Accords, which 401 of her colleagues supported.
Lee, whose anti-Israel rhetoric during her campaign has turned to action in Congress, drew the ire on Wednesday of a potential opponent, who slammed her vote as “outrageous and immoral.”
“Does Summer Lee not know why Israel exists? Does she not care?” asked Republican congressional candidate James Hayes. “There can be no doubt that Summer Lee stands with antisemites like Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib. All pretense has been cast aside by this despicable, hateful vote.”
Lee, who joined other members of “The Squad” of progressive, anti-Israel lawmakers in penning a letter last month to the Biden administration calling on restrictions on aid to Israel, has in the past questioned Israel’s right to defend itself. She also criticized Israel’s reaction to the more than 4,000 rockets launched for 11 days by terror groups based in the Gaza Strip in May 2021.
Lee’s “no” vote on Tuesday’s resolution came in the early days of jury selection for the trial of the suspect in the Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha Congregation mass shooting, noted Hayes, who intends to challenge Lee next year in Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District.
“To abandon the world’s Jews in the face of mounting antisemitism is troubling,” he wrote. “To do so even as jurors are being selected for a trial in the single, largest antisemitic attack in U.S. history one that took place in Ms. Lee’s district—sends an unmistakable and frightening message.”