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J Street Loses Another Two Dems

10:07 AM, Oct 17, 2009 • By MICHAEL GOLDFARB
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The names of Reps. John Salazar (CO-03) and Ed Towns (NY-10) have been scrubbed from the list of congressmen serving on the host committee for J Street's inaugural conference. That brings to ten the number of congressmen, Republicans and Democrats, senators and representatives, who have bailed on J Street after learning that, contrary to their promotional materials, they are not a pro-Israel group. Apparently even the Friday afternoon roll out of Jim Jones as the conference's keynote speaker -- an announcement that J Street surely would have preferred to make on Monday but which they were compelled to move up lest their entire roster of Congressional supporters defect en masse -- wasn't enough to stanch the bleeding. The tally of defections so far:

Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR)
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY)
Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS)
Rep. Mike Castle (R-DE)
Rep. Mike Ross (D-AR)
Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX)
Rep. Leonard Boswell (D-IA)
Rep. John Salazar (D-CO)
Rep. Ed Towns (D-NY)

Among the members who remain on that list, there are a few who aren't likely to hang around much longer. Senator Mark Udall is too savvy to be caught up in this mess. Will Senator Mark Pryor really go to the mat for an anti-Israel, pro-Hamas organization? And what about Republican Reps. Charles Boustany, Brian Bilbray, and Howard Coble? Are there large anti-Israel constituencies in those districts of which I was previously unaware?

I doubt those three are even aware their names are on this list, but after watching J Street speaker Josh Healey's rousing performance of "Queer Intifada" in which he declares that "Guantanamo is Auschwitz" and "Anne Frank is Matthew Shepard," I'm pretty confident they will ask to have their names removed.

Healey also wrote a poem about how "We're the ones writing numbers on the wrists of babies born in the ghetto called Gaza." A few weeks ago in his speech to the UN, Israeli PM Bibi Netanyahu drew some very obvious parallels between the Iranian regime and Nazi Germany. The anti-Israel left went nuts (see Andrew Sullivan here, Juan Cole here, and Philip Weiss here, for example), but here is a J Street confederate who compares Israel and the United States to Nazi Germany every time he picks up a pen. Even by the left's own standards this kind of thing is beyond the pale. What member of Congress can attach his name to an event where the speakers will accuse the United States of running a concentration camp at Guantanamo?