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DNC Chair Questions GOP Candidates' Commitment to American Exceptionalism

11:37 AM, May 26, 2011 • By MICHAEL WARREN
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This morning, the newly appointed chair of the Democratic National Committee, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.), told reporters she questioned whether Republican presidential candidates like Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty and Jon Huntsman believed in American exceptionalism.

Wasserman Schultz

"I’m concerned about their commitment to American exceptionalism," said Wasserman Schultz.

Asked later to explain this statement, the Florida Democrat clarified that she wasn't questioning those Republicans' patriotism. "Why aren’t they supportive of closing tax loopholes to make sure that we can not sanctify companies that ship jobs overseas?" Wasserman Schultz said. "Why aren’t they supportive of making sure that we can strike a balance and not pile all the pain on top of people who can least afford it in the middle class and working families? Why do they only care about tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires? Why would they say that they oppose bailing out the auto industry and rescuing the auto industry so that we can make sure that we can have a strong and vibrant American automobile industry, and then not fund it? Why would they not want to make sure that everyone has access to health care?"

Without these government interventions, Wasserman Schultz continued, Americans would have been unable to outcompete global competitors in the marketplace. "But I do not question their patriotism at all," she repeated.

Wasserman Schultz also discussed her recent disagreement with the Republican Jewish Coalition over the validity of debating America's Israel policy in the next election. "We need to make sure that Israel never becomes a partisan issue," she reiterated. The congresswoman, who is Jewish, also criticized the RJC. "They put their Republicanism ahead of their pro-Israel stance," she said.

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