As Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) announced his bid today for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, the National Jewish Democratic Council sharply criticized the candidate as being dangerously out of touch with American-Jewish voters. Greg Rosenbaum, chair of the NJDC Board of Directors, stated,
"Senator Paul has stated that he wants to be a 'different kind of Republican.' Based on his history, we can only imagine what that kind of Republican will be. Undoubtedly, it will be a Republican who would cut foreign aid to our allies throughout the world, including Israel, which would be dangerous for their safety and security. This kind of Republican calls aid to our stalwart ally 'welfare,' a stance that has drawn criticism from members of his own party, and he has only recently flip-flopped on the issue. This kind of Republican also apparently has a stark misunderstanding of the First Amendment, believing that 'it doesn't say keep religion out of government.'
"With all that said, Sen. Paul has additionally proven that he may be just like too many of his fellow Republicans when it comes to some of the issues American-Jewish voters most support. He has stated that he 'doesn't believe' in the concept of gay rights, a stance that puts him at odds with an overwhelming majority of American-Jewish voters. He has compared equal pay for women to the former Soviet regime, stating that it would 'give away freedom.' And he has repeatedly dismissed the importance of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, suggesting that businesses should be allowed to discriminate.
"Since entering the Senate three years ago, Rand Paul has continued to prove that he dangerously threatens the values most important to Jewish voters and to Israel. Even Republican Jewish voters and party leaders have added their voices opposing Sen. Paul's bid, recognizing that he stands strictly at odds with the issues out community cares most about. At this pivotal time in our nation's history and for our community specifically, Rand Paul has proven that he is a candidate unfit for the White House."