Jonathan Tobin notes that, whatever his other shortcomings, Arlen Specter has a solid three-decade record of supporting the Jewish state. Joe Sestak, Specter’s opponent, is another story:
Sestak spoke at a fundraiser for CAIR – the pro-Hamas front group that was implicated in the Holy Land Foundation federal terror prosecution. And he has signed on to congressional letters criticizing Israel’s measures of self-defense against terrorists and refused to back those bipartisan letters backing the Jewish state on the issue of Jerusalem. Though his stands on other foreign-policy issues, such as continuing the fight against al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan, are better than those of Specter (who tried to curry favor with the left by backing a policy of cutting and running in Afghanistan), Sestak seems to be J Street’s idea of a model congressman.
Pennsylvania voters will still have a strong pro-Israel option if Specter loses. For, as Tobin notes, Republican Pat Toomey is “impeccably pro-Israel.”
I doubt, though, that very many Jews will be able to support a candidate as conservative as Toomey. Perhaps the best to be hoped for is that, if Sestak wins today, a decent chunk of the Jewish vote will decline to vote for either candidate in November.