Cori Bush, a 44-year-old nurse and Black Lives Matter activist, has ousted longtime incumbent Rep. Lacy Clay in the Democratic primary for Missouri’s 1st Congressional District.
Embattled congressman Eliot Engel personifies a tradition in the Democratic Party of being “PEP” — progressive except Palestine. Engel has repeatedly hailed Black Lives Matter and endorsed the Green New Deal. But when it comes to Israel, he castigates Palestinians and says since 1947 Arabs have only wanted “to push Jews into the sea.”
The big story coming out of AIPAC is every one in the Democratic leadership dumping all over the first term Muslim congresswoman from Minnesota, Ilhan Omar, while having nothing to say about Benjamin Netanyahu. In the process they have clearly damaged their own standing inside the progressive wing of the party, including among liberal Zionist advocates. When House Majority leader Steny Hoyer said Omar should accuse him of dual loyalty for his support for Israel, he seemed to confirm what she had said.
The Democratic Party is dividing over Israel. Buzzfeed quotes Waleed Shaheed saying that every presidential candidate will be asked where they stand on Netanyahu. Rep Rashida Tlaib says she will vote against aid to Israel till it gives equality and dignity to her grandmother. And Russ Douthat of the NYT says the party must debate anti-Zionism openly.