The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism issued a statement today condemning advertising sent to New Jersey voters. A postcard mailed out by the GOP falsely implies that at two leading Jewish figures in the United States have endorsed George W. Bush. The New York Times reports:
TRENTON, Oct. 29 - The leaders of two national Jewish organizations have demanded that the New Jersey Republican State Committee stop using their names in campaign fliers that urge Jewish voters to cast their ballots for President Bush.
The directors of both the Anti-Defamation League and the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism said on Friday that they were surprised and disappointed that the Republican state committee had used their names and quotations on a mailer sent out to 60,000 Jewish households this week.
The pamphlet features a photo of President Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon standing shoulder to shoulder on the front, and on the back it lists quotations from four well-known Jewish figures who praise the president's commitment to Israel and the war on terror.
But two of those quoted, Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, and Rabbi David Saperstein, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, complained Friday that neither they nor their organizations had endorsed any candidate, and they said it was inappropriate for Republicans to use their names and words on a campaign pamphlet a few days before a hotly contested election.
Mr. Foxman said that although the quotation attributed to him was accurate, it was misleading for Republicans to list it beneath the words of former Mayor Edward I. Koch of New York City, who has been a visible supporter of Mr. Bush.
The other quotation on the flier was attributed to Howard A. Kohr, executive director of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. A spokesperson for the group did not return phone calls seeking comment late Friday.
Mr. Foxman said: "The way my name, and my quotation, are being used is inaccurate, because it makes it look like I and the A.D.L. are supporting the re-election, which is simply not true. As soon as I learned of it, I called and asked them to stop."
Rabbi Saperstein said he was outraged that his words had been used in a partisan campaign mailer.
"It is utterly factually incorrect for them to mislead people into thinking I endorse any candidate in this race," he said. "It is woefully inappropriate, and I want them to cease and desist immediately."
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Remember that the Republican National Committee sent out a flyer warning voters in some states that democrats secretly planned to ban the Bible. Sending out a postcard pretending to have support from religious leaders is just the kind of misleading effort the Bush campaign has run from day one. They are ending their campaign just the way they started it. Hopefully, voters will pay them back at the polls tomorrow.