I found this demoralizing, as another register of where the Establishment is on the conflict. Last night on “Hardball,” at 7:30 or so, Joy Reid, sitting in for Chris Matthews, reads a report from Time that Sheldon Adelson will spend a lot of money to take down Kentucky senator Rand Paul if he tries to become the Republican nominee for president because of his views on Israel.
Reid says the pro-Israel community mistrusts Rand Paul, but that Paul has said he is “evolving” on Israel.
Mark Halperin interrupts her:
That guy could evolve from Passover to Easter to Christmas to every holiday in the world. He could spend his whole life evolving. He will never evolve enough for the pro Israel wing of the party. And that’s not an insignificant thing, not only against people in the nomination fight, but in the general election. That is an important part of the current view of foreign policy. He can evolve all he wants, I just don’t think he can get over that hurdle with a lot of people.
“A lot of people.” Meaning, the right people.
Former Republican chair Michael Steele gets in, “He’s the only one doing it right now.” Meaning, Paul is the only one taking on the neocons inside the Republican Party, and taking on Sheldon Adelson, who wants Obama to nuke Iran.
Again, I find this deeply demoralizing, including Joy Reid’s passivity– a smart person who knows a lot about minority rights. And yes, Halperin’s father is a bulwark of the Israel lobby. And Halperin’s book on the last election leaves the Israel factor completely out of the political equation, even as he swears to its importance on MSNBC. “An important part of the current view of foreign policy” — trying to reinforce a dubious tenet by affirming it. Almost sounds like a papal bull.