Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), speaking on Monday at the 2015 J Street convention, praised the far left “Pro-Israel, Pro-Peace” organization for backing her 2010 re-election campaign against Joel Pollak, Breitbart News’s Senior Editor-at-Large and Breitbart California Editor.
Schakowsky begins by thanking J Street for its backing of her positions when it comes to Israel.
“I’d like to begin with just a great thank you for J Street. I have to tell you that the courage to take positions that I’ve been able to take are [sic] really because of the space that, in a very short time, J Street had opened for members of Congress to expand political discussion about the State of Israel and our relationship to it.”
In the video—which was provided by Paul Miller, who served as a senior policy adviser for Pollak’s campaign and is now the executive director of the Salomon Center—the Democratic Rep. from Illinois rips into the Breitbart editor.
“In 2010, I had an election… an election within our community. That is, I ran against a Jewish-Orthodox, Tea Party Republican who made it very clear that actually Jan Schakowsky was anti-Israel because of the positions that she took,” the Congresswoman said of Pollak.
“J Street came to my rescue,” she added. “Not just with money, but with the kind of moral support that was able to assure a substantial victory in that election.”
Ron Kampeas, the JTA Washington bureau chief, wrote on Twitter that Schakowsky “ickily” noted Pollak’s Orthodox observance of his faith:
— Ron Kampeas (@kampeas) March 23, 2015
The Democratic representative was one of the fringe leftist members of the House who decided to boycott Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s March speech to a joint session of the U.S. Congress.
Pundits have noted that Schakowsky has consistently taken controversial positions when it comes to Israel. Others have expressed doubt that J Street itself is in fact a pro-Israel organization.
“She has walked lockstep with the most anti-Israel administration in the history of US-Israeli relations,” Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick said of Schakowsky in February.”
Famed Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz said of J Street in April 2014, “How can you be a ‘pro-Israel’ organization and never express any pro-Israel views? It is absolutely shocking to me. Every press release seemed to have a negative about Israel.”
“I just have to shake my head when these [J Street members] ask me to believe in Iran,” former Rep. Allen West said of the group in 2010.
J Street has consistently opposed any new sanctions against the Iranian regime and has pushed for further pressure against the Jewish state at the United Nations. Its Washington D.C. policy conference, which is rife with controversial figures, ends Tuesday.