Rep. Josh Gottheimer raised about $50,000 at a Bergen County fundraiser to benefit the congressional campaign of Robert J. Menendez Jr., the son of New Jersey’s crooked US Senator and a first-time candidate in the Hudson County-based 8th district.
Poly-Vision CEO Phil Goldschmidt, a North Jersey Jewish Business Alliance board member, hosted the event for Menendez, along with NORPAC President Benjamin S. Chouake MD, where big money was invested in the likely congressman to secure his loyalty to Israel and a militaristic approach to the Middle East. NORPAC has contributed to many Republicans.
The powerful lobby group American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and its affiliates, like NORPAC, have begun flooding congressional primary elections with millions of dollars to defeat progressives through misinformation and attack ads, even though the organization supported hardline Republicans who fought to overturn Joe Biden’s election.
AIPAC has endorsed more than 100 Republicans who voted to undermine our democracy and overturn 2020’s election results.
Pro-Israel groups and individuals contributed just under $15 million to the campaigns of American politicians. Among the top recipients were: New Jersey’s Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez, who got $548,507; and Republican Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who was given $352,894.
Those pro-Israel groups and individuals also contributed to members of the lunatic fringe in politics, including Georgia Republicans David Perdue, $1,053,098; and Kelly Loeffler, $460,231; South Carolina Republican Lindsey Graham, $466,665; New York Republican Lee Zeldin, $567,476; Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, $380,928; Iowa Republican Joni Ernst, $382,453; and the defeated Arizona Republican Martha McSally, $399,823.
The leading pro-Israel money recipients in 2022 so far are Oklahoma Republican Senator James Lankford, $234,300; Florida GOP Senator Marco Rubio, $202,945; and South Carolina Republican Senator Tim Scott, $181,647.
Gottheimer accepted $484,490 from those groups in the last three election cycles.
The data examined by the non-profit, non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics shows that in addition to campaign money, Pro-Israeli foreign agents registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act, which can include lobbyists working on behalf of the Israeli government, companies, political parties, and other organizations $140 million over the last five years to influence American political policy.
NORPAC (also the “North Jersey PAC”) is a New Jersey-based political action committee that has worked to promote a hardline “pro-Israel” agenda in Congress, often espousing a more warlike approach than such alternative groups as the progressive J-Street, comprised of pro-Israel, pro-peace Americans who want Israel to be secure, democratic and the national home of the Jewish people.
The gathering suggests that if Menendez Jr. is sent to Congress, he will advocate a “shoot first, ask questions later” approach to foreign policy, the kind of outlook that got thousands of Americans killed in wars that were difficult to get out of.