Nathan Diament

Obama To Jewish Leaders: Peace Prospects Are Bleak

03/08/2013

President Obama believes prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace are “bleak,” but he still will urge both sides to avoid unilateral actions that might further damage a process he hopes will be back on track within a year.

That was the message Obama delivered Thursday in a meeting with about 25 Jewish community figures at the White House to discuss his planned trip to Israel later this month. Obama was especially engaged, participants said, when it came to discussing how he might best convey to the Israeli people his enthusiasm for Israel and its Jewish history.

Jewish Groups Set To Fight Cuts For Charity Deductions

Community could be harmed at time of rising needs.

11/02/2012
Staff Writer

Jewish groups are preparing to fight cuts to the charitable tax deduction that both President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney have proposed to reduce the budget deficit.

Nathan Diament

Battle Over Circumcision is Shaping Up in California

05/31/2011
JTA

SAN FRANCISCO (JTA) -- In November, San Franciscans will vote on a ballot measure that would outlaw circumcision on boys under the age of 18.

Although experts say it is highly unlikely the measure will pass -- very few state propositions pass, much less one this controversial -- the mere fact that it reached the ballot, and in such a major city, has caused much concern for Jews and their allies.

Rabbinical Students No Longer TAP-ped Out

State to grant $18 million in tuition aid in tough fiscal year; report alleges political deal.

04/05/2011
Assistant Managing Editor

Years of lobbying by Agudath Israel of America appear to have borne fruit now that the state budget includes allocations to help struggling undergraduate rabbinical students pay tuition.

Agudath Israel says Dean Skelos, who controls the state Senate with a slim Republican majority, was an “avid champion” of funds

Don't stop the presses: DC school voucher bill passes House. Again.

This is one of those recurring stories that writes itself: the House of Representatives has revived the District of Columbia “Opportunity Scholarships Program” - read here “school vouchers” - and the Orthodox Union is happy, the Reform movement unhappy.

The program was mostly shut down in 2009, but getting it back on track was a priority for House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio).

But getting it through the Democratic Senate won't be easy, and President Obama is opposed.

It's baaack: the issue that won't go away

This one is so old it has whiskers: Orthodox groups are supporting, church-state separation groups are opposing and most other Jewish groups are ignoring the latest chapter in the perennial battle over a District of Columbia school vouchers program.

The D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, created in 2004, was the first school voucher program involving federal dollars, which made it a particularly explosive issue for supporters and opponents alike.

The Tax-Spending Squeeze

Jewish groups fear political crossfire as cuts loom.

12/07/2010
Washington Correspondent

Jewish groups are caught between a rock and a budgetary hard place as a battered Obama administration battles resurgent congressional Republicans over tax-and-spending issues that threaten to produce the sharpest cuts to health and human service programs in history.

Chanukah at the White House - with 1/3 of the Supreme Court

Chanukah at the White House is always a kick for participants – this year, about 500 from Jewish communities across the country – but for some, there was special meaning in Thursday night's gathering.

Three Supreme Court Justices were in attendance – all of them Jewish: Justice Stephen Breyer, Justice Elena Kagan and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. As President Barack Obama noted in his remarks, that's fully one-third of the high court.

With Emanuel and Axelrod Gone, Will the Jews Have Access to Obama?

10/11/2010
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- They were two Jewish aides who had offices within shouting distance of the Oval Office.

But the resignation last week of Rahm Emanuel as White House chief of staff and the imminent departure of David Axelrod, the president’s senior adviser, is raising the question of what the disappearance of the president’s top two Jewish aides will mean for the Jewish community.

Top Jewish Democrats and leaders of Jewish organizations say there will be an absence -- of optics, not substance.

More Jewish groups speaking out against Islam bashing

More Jewish groups are getting the message that the epidemic of Islam bashing isn't ...well, good for the Jews or any other religious minority.

Yesterday a broad spectrum of religious leaders gathered in Washington to discuss the rising tide of anti-Islam bigotry. Representing the Jewish community at sessions hosted by the Islamic Society of North America: Rabbi David Saperstein, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism and Rabbi Steve Gutow, president of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA).

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