Wednesday 22 November 2023

House Dem Leaves Progressive Caucus In Break Over Israel

 A House Democrat has parted ways with the Congressional Progressive Caucus amid a growing rift on Capitol Hill over Israel‘s war on Hamas.

The Intercept broke the story on Monday that Rep. Lois Frankel (D-FL) left because of differing opinions on the Gaza Strip siege.

In a follow-up report on Tuesday, Axios said Frankel’s office confirmed her departure, and the news outlet cited a source who pinned the decision to leave on how some members of the leftist caucus were responding to the Israel situation.

The Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine shows Frankel was removed from the caucus’s online membership page sometime over the past several weeks.

Frankel, who is Jewish, voiced “unwavering support” for Israel after Hamas carried out terrorist attacks on Israeli soil that killed more than 1,000 people and led to hundreds of hostages being taken on October 7.

Her strong pro-Israel stance puts Frankel at odds with members of the leftist “Squad” who have criticized Israel, prompting a wave of primary challenges in the 2024 election cycle.

The chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), drew controversy and sought to apologize in July after she said Israel was a “racist state.”

Weeks into the operation in Gaza, though there is a growing number of leftist members of the House and Senate calling for a ceasefire while raising concerns about casualties among Palestinian civilians, other Democrats have stayed resolute in standing by Israel as it fights to root out Hamas.


Frankel was one of 22 Democrats who voted in favor of censuring Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), who is a member of the “Squad” and a vice chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, for her rhetoric about Israel.

The censure resolution, which passed with broad GOP support earlier this month, reprimanded Tlaib for promoting “false narratives” regarding the October 7, 2023, Hamas assault on Israel and for “calling for the destruction of the state of Israel.”

In addition, Frankel joined with 11 other House Democrats and most Republicans to pass a White House-opposed plan to offset $14.3 billion in aid for Israel by slashing the same amount of funds meant for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).


“The United States has a moral duty and national security urgency to aid Israel in defending herself,” Frankel said in a statement on the vote. “Make no mistake, Hamas terrorists and others in the region are out to destroy Israel and kill all Jews. We must send an unequivocal message to the world that we stand with Israel.”

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