Certain elements of the pro-Israel community are willing to give DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz a pass on being tough on Iran. After all, she's in difficult position, they say, trying to be pro-Israel and the head of the Democratic party.
"The [Iran sanctions] bill is only a litmus test for the unsophisticated in the pro-Israel community," AIPAC member Michael Adler tells Foreign Policy. "People can disagree on tactics, but Debbie is in a unique position as DNC chair and has the pro-Israel agenda deeply-rooted in her."
Another AIPAC member, Bruce Levy, says folks should cut the DNC chair some slack -- it's hard these days to be a pro-Israel Democrat. "Debbie can not poke a stick in the eye of the president," Levy also tells Foreign Policy. "She's the head of the DNC for God's sake. ... I don't envy her position. ... She's representing a large constituency in South Florida and the DNC at the same time. That can be a conflict."
A conflict indeed.
Others believe Wasserman Schultz's deceitful double-talk on Iran deserves the scrutiny it's attracted, despite her being the head of a political party that is keen on cutting a bad deal with Iran. Such as the Emergency Committee for Israel, which is out today with a new ad highlighting the DNC chair's refusal to answer questions and guide her party toward a more responsible path:
The ad's main line: "Israel needs real friends. Now more than ever."
As ECI explains in a statement, "The ad highlights Wasserman Schultz's attempt to deceive her constituents by portraying herself as a staunch supporter of Iran sanctions -- even as news reports confirm she is working behind the scenes to kill bipartisan House and Senate measures that endorse new sanctions should talks with Iran fail."
"Debbie Wasserman-Schultz is trying to play her pro-Israel constituents for fools -- telling them she supports Iran sanctions while she's hard at work in Washington trying to kill bipartisan House and Senate measures for the most partisan of reasons," says ECI executive director Noah Pollak in a statement.
According to ECI, "The spot will air multiple times on cable news and Sunday political shows in South Florida over the next several days."