The nation’s largest synagogue-sponsored chapter of the National Conference of Synagogue Youth seceded this week from the youth arm of the Orthodox Union, sending a powerful message to national leadership over how the Baruch Lanner situation was handled over the years and indicating the crisis is not over.Even after Rabbi Lanner’s resignation as NCSY director of regions was announced last Friday, wide-scale communal fallout continued from The Jewish Week’s special report on the rabbi’s alleged long-term abuse of teens — physical, emotional, psychological and se
Richard Joel, who was named this week to chair a special Orthodox Union commission investigating its role regarding Rabbi Baruch Lanner, pledged a “full and open” inquiry aimed at ultimately “restoring confidence” in the organization and its youth arm, the National Conference of Synagogue Youth (NCSY).Joel, president of Hillel, the Jewish campus organization, will head an eight-member commission of respected men and women in the Orthodox community.
While the candidates in the contentious battle for Senate wage all-out war for the Jewish vote, sparks have yet to fly in the governor’s race, in which Republican George Pataki is far outpacing Democratic challenger Peter Vallone.
Sen. Alfonse D’Amato made an impassioned pitch for support at a closed-door breakfast meeting with Jewish leaders this week while denouncing his Democratic challenger, Rep. Charles Schumer, as a “putzhead” who could not match his record on Israel, according to several participants.
The only sure things in life are death, taxes — and a strong Jewish turnout on Election Day. And that will be particularly true this year, experts agree. Aside from the intense battle for the U.S. Senate here, a race which has the Jewish community torn between two favorites, there is another motivating factor: The Monica Lewinsky scandal. Polls show that with the exception of blacks, Jews are more supportive of President Bill Clinton than other ethnic groups.
The more voters become disenchanted with the Democrats and Republicans in this year of political turmoil, the better Thomas Golisano likes it. The Rochester millionaire, who founded the state’s Independence Party chapter in 1994, draws his core support from those who are fed up with the status quo. Golisano won about 217,000 votes in his ’94 bid for governor, and enrollment in the party is on the rise, growing 13 percent last year in New York City.
When The Jewish Week first spoke with Bruce Blakeman in June, shortly after his nomination as the Republican candidate for state comptroller, he had difficulty making his case against Democratic incumbent H. Carl McCall, preferring to talk about his own qualifications.
Turn on the TV in Brooklyn or Long Island and you’ll see former mayor Ed Koch praising Sen. Al D’Amato as “a real mensch.” Or you may see Holocaust survivor Estelle Sapir ask God to bless the Republican for helping her retrieve her father’s plundered fortune from Swiss bankers.
In his suite high above the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Midtown Tuesday night, Peter Vallone was surrounded by numerous Jewish politicians, communal leaders and Democratic activists who came to wish him well.
“He’s been a strong supporter of Jewish causes and a worthy candidate” said one official of a Jewish organization, who asked not to be identified, of the City Council speaker who was overwhelmingly nominated — with 65 percent of the Jewish vote — to challenge Republican Gov. George Pataki. “This is going to be a good race.”
It’s 8 a.m. at the Sheepshead Bay Road subway stop in Brooklyn, and most of the commuters rushing to catch the D local get only a brief glimpse of the thin, young man handing out fliers from a Nobody Beats the Wiz shopping bag.
“Good morning, ladies and gentleman,” says Anthony David Weiner, candidate for Congress, identified to the voters with a large placard borne by a young girl in a long skirt. “Welcome to the newly renovated Sheepshead Bay Road Station — newly renovated, thanks to your City Councilman.”