Over the weekend of April 5-7, more than 700 Jewish Republicans met in Las Vegas for the annual Republican Jewish Coalition [leadership meeting].
The conference began at sundown Friday with a glatt kosher Shabbat dinner, followed by speakers: Gov. Ron DeSantis, Fla., Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer, GOP Conference Chair Liz Cheney, Gov. Pete Ricketts, Neb., and Rep. David Kustoff, Tenn.
The following morning, after breakfast, there were a number of speakers: GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy, Rep. Lee Zeldin, N.Y., Rep. Billy Long, Mo., Sen. Lindsey Graham, S.C. and school/student safety advocate Andrew Pollack, whose daughter was killed in the Parkland, Florida, shooting.
The highlight of the morning was when Norm Coleman, chairman of the RJC and former Minnesota senator, introduced President Donald J. Trump. The crowd went wild and everyone ran to the front of the room to take photos.
President Trump’s speech highlighted his accomplishments for America, but mostly what he’s done for Israel. This included how he: recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s eternal capital; moved the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem; ended the Iran Nuclear Deal; recognized Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights; withdrew the U.S. from the United Nations Human Rights Council; and signed into law the Taylor Force Act, which prohibits economic support of the Palestinian Authority.
For the morning session, an additional 200 people were invited for standing-room-only behind the RJC members. President Trump introduced his son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner to the audience and was thanked for his contribution to the administration. He also recognized the SWAT officer who was wounded during response to the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. He also recognized two others who came to the rescue of a Druze officer at the Wall in Jerusalem. Awards were presented to all three men for their heroism.
After a glatt kosher lunch break, the following speakers were introduced: Coleman, Israel’s U.N. Ambassador Danny Danon, Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Jim Risch and Gov. Kristi Noem, both of S.D., Sen. Kevin Cramer, N.D., Rep. Denver Riggleman, Va., and Congressman Dan Crenshaw, Texas. Sen. David Perdue, Ga., introduced Vice President Mike Pence, who also received an enormous standing ovation.
Four former Jewish Democrats spoke about why they became Republicans. They agreed Israel was the deciding factor in their change of party. They thanked President Trump for his role and support of Israel.
Some humorous moments from the speakers included Coleman, who addressed all of President Trump’s accomplishments, and apropos of the upcoming of Passover, after each accomplishment, we all recited “Dayenu.” Graham spoke about the proposed “Green New Deal,” saying that without planes, trains, ships, cars, etc., “Every day will be Shabbat.” He received a standing ovation for that.
Saturday evening, we were invited to another glatt kosher dinner, this time, with an Asian influence and an ice cream sundae bar for dessert.
Sunday morning during breakfast, there was a panel discussion moderated by Coleman on national security and defense with Congressmen Michael Gallagher and Michael Waltz.
For more information about the RJC, contact the local Georgia chapter, firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Laurie and David Weinstein
- Ron DeSantis
- RON DERMER
- Liz Cheney
- Pete Ricketts
- David Kustoff
- Kevin McCarthy
- Lee Zeldin
- Billy Long
- Lindsey Graham
- Andrew Pollack
- Norm Coleman
- Danny Danon
- Jim Risch
- Kristi Noem
- Kevin Cramer
- Denver Riggleman
- Dan Crenshaw
- Michael Gallagher
- Michael Waltz
- President Donald Trump
- Vice President Mike Pence
- Republican Jewish Coalition