Douglas Bloomfield's blog

Ira Forman Named Envoy To Combat Anti-Semitism

Secretary of State John Kerry today named veteran Jewish political operative Ira N. Forman to be the administration's Special Envoy and head of the Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism.

He brings to the job nearly 40 years of experience working at the intersection of the Jewish community and the political world, winning bipartisan respect. He served as the Jewish Outreach Director for President Obama's 2012 reelection campaign.

Repealing Obamacare: Obama 37, Republicans 0

House Republicans made their 37th attempt to repeal Obamacare last Thursday and for the 37th straight time failed.  Actually it passed the Republican-controlled House but it is DOA at the Democrat-controlled Senate, and everyone knew that.  So why try?  

Republicans make no secret that it's easier to keep up these meaningless votes that risk passing legislation that President Obama might claim as an achievement, even if they get to share the credit.

GOP Tries To Repeal Obamacare 37th Time…And Counting

House Republicans intend to make their 2,917th futile attempt to repeal Obamacare this week. Why try again when they know it will ultimately fail like all the other attempts?  Speaker John Boehner has a unique excuse: he said the new members of the 113th Congress haven't had a chance to vote on it yet. 

UN As In UN-believable

Iran named to chair UN Conference on Disarmament. 

Israelis Want Peace Talks But Are Pessimistic

At the White House this afternoon, President Barack Obama updated British Prime Minister David Cameron on Secretary of State John Kerry's efforts to get Israelis and Palestinians back to the peace table.

By a bit better than 2:1 margin, Israelis would like to see that happen, but only one in three think those talks would produce peace, and in fact most doubt they'll even get started.

Why Obama's Popularity Is Rising In Israel

Remember when President Obama's approval rating among Israelis was in the single digits?  That was August 2009 when it bottomed at 4%. A lot has changed since then, and a Pew Research Center survey released this week showed Obama "enjoys the confidence of 61% of Israelis." Among Israeli Jews, 64% rate Obama favorably vs. 48% of Arabs.

Time For Arab League To Put Up Or Shut Up

Arab League leaders were in Washington last week doing what they do best:  talking.  Trouble is they're all talk and no walk.  This time they endorsed the concept of land swaps as part of an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement.  They made it sound revolutionary but in fact it was old stuff for the two parties who'd been discussing that for more than a dozen years.

The PA's UJA-like Problem

If you've ever been involved in fundraising for your synagogue or organization -- or worked the phone bank on Super Sunday -- you might appreciate this story.

The various Arab states, especially the wealthy Gulf oil sheikhs, have been very generous in pledging their support for the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority. But the PA has painfully learned there's a big difference between pledging and paying.

GOP's Worst Kept Secret Exposed

Pennsylvania Republican Senator Pat Toomey outed his party's leadership when confirmed the worst kept secret in Washington:  Gridlock on Capitol Hill is not a result of deep disagreements on policy issues but something much more personal: a Republican desire to deny helping the President "do something he wanted to get done."

Obama Completes Cabinet With Two Jewish Nominees

President Obama completed filling out his second term cabinet today when, as reported in the Political Insider last week, he nominated Chicago businesswoman Penny Pritzker as secretary of commerce and Mike Froman to be the U.S. Trade Representative.

Pritzker, a longtime Obama supporter and fundraiser, brings extensive experience in the real estate, finance and hotel industries; her family owns the Hyatt hotel chain. 

Obama described Froman, a former Harvard Law School classmate of his, as "one of the world's foremost experts on our global economy."

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