Election 2018: How Did Anti-Semites Do?


A few days ago, Tablet Magazine published a list of eight “antisemites running for Congress”. It was a good start, but woefully incomplete – there are so many more antisemites to choose from! Moreover, it doesn’t really properly gradate antisemitism (there’s a huge difference between a literal Holocaust Denier and someone who’s been in a room with Louis Farrakhan). So while you can read how Tablet’s 8 fared here, for a more comprehensive picture this post has you covered.

First, the good news: the absolutely, positively, most blatant antisemites generally did not win.

In state legislative races, the same basically held true:

The two biggest antisemites to win were both incumbents.

Now, those guys represent the worst of the worst. Most (not all) were running on the GOP line, and most (not all) lost. But the Tablet list itself evinces a clear antisemitic spectrum, and once you move past the obvious cases the story gets more complex.

On Tablet’s list were two definite borderline entries, for whom I think it’s fair to question if they are properly called antisemitic at all (certainly, they’re far further afield than some of the names further down on this list):

  • The case for including Indiana Rep. Andre Carson (D) appears to boil down to “he’s been in a room with Farrakhan and the Iranian president”, which isn’t exactly on the level of denying the Holocaust. Call me jaded, but this felt very thin to me. Carson’s Indiana district is gerrymandered to be reliably blue, and so it was – Carson took his race 63-37.
  • Lena Epstein – the Republican candidate in Michigan’s 11th congressional district – also has fair grounds to question her inclusion. Yes, inviting a Jews for Jesus Rabbi to eulogize the Pittsburgh victims was stupid, and insensitive, and baffling, and did I mention stupid? – but was it antisemitic? I’m not sure. But we no longer need to expend much effort figuring it out: Epstein was soundly defeated by Democrat Haley Stevens, flipping this open GOP seat blue and I suspect signaling the last we hear of Epstein in national politics.

The next tier of antisemites comprises people who aren’t really accused of saying anything antisemitic themselves, but who have endorsed antisemites or antisemitic movements.

  • On the Democratic side, Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL) is the poster child – while the past few weeks might have you believe that every Democrat in the country is a Louis Farrakhan fanboy, Davis is one of the few who actually has praised the man (the NOI has a large presence in Davis’ Chicago district). Davis’ district is one of the bluest in the country, and he took 88% of the vote against nominal Republican opposition.
  • On the Republican side, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) endorsed a Holocaust denier for school board (and that wasn’t even his only connection to the Holocaust denying set). “Putin’s favorite Congressman” looks to have gone down in his toss-up race, losing narrowly to Democrat Harley Rouda. 
  • Also falling into this category (though arguably shading into the class below) is California GOP Rep. Steve Knight, who ran an ad featuring a far-right activist notorious for antisemitic and racist online comments (Knight plead ignorance about the guy’s views, but you’d think the t-shirt he was wearing in the ad – a US flag with “infidel” stamped over it – would be a giveaway). Knight lost his seat 51-49 to Democrat Katie Hill.

Next, we get to people who have themselves said or done antisemitic things – albeit perhaps not as vividly as a Steve King sort.

Two more Democratic members of Tablet’s list – Leslie Cockburn and Ilhan Omar – fit in this category, albeit for comments that are several years or (in Cockburn’s case) decades old.

  • Cockburn wrote a book in the early 90s that was basically a “Israel is responsible for all awful things” screed; she lost her VA-05 race to Republican Denver “bigfoot erotica” Riggelman, because America is awesome and that was really a choice. The margin was 53-47 in a race that was viewed as a decent, if not top-of-the-class, Democratic pickup opportunity.
  • Omar, running in Minnesota’s 5th district, has come under fire for a tweet where she accused Israel of “hypnotizing” the world to prevent it from seeing its “evil”. While she has seemingly moderated her views on Israel, she pointedly declined to walk back this comment or recognize how it seems to traffic in antisemitic tropes (in contrast to her 5th district predecessor, Keith Ellison, who pointedly disassociated himself from prior Farrakhan affiliations). Omar won her race by a crushing 78-21 margin.

Finally, it’s worth looking at some local races where Republicans (albeit not always the Republican candidate) ran antisemitic ads.

What are the takeaways here? Well, for starters, the most virulent and explicit antisemites generally lost. That’s good, though given that those candidates generally ran in ideologically lopsided districts it’s easy to overdraw from that. The Steve King victory shows that where the partisan lean works in the antisemite’s favor, partisan allegiance generally trumps (seriously, does anyone have confidence that if Arthur Jones ran in Steve King’s district as the Republican candidate, he would lose?). And if that holds true for to a blatant bigot like King, it certainly applies to more mild or sporadic offenders, like Davis and Omar.
The more interesting – and troublesome – story is how less overt but still clear antisemitism played out in more closely contested races. Those who assume that America just doesn’t tolerate antisemitism are in for a surprise. Hagedorn’s antisemitic past (and present) didn’t seem to dent his chances in Minnesota’s toss-up first district, for example. This isn’t to say that antisemites were universally winning – more that antisemitism, even when expressed, generally isn’t a losing issue either even in the sort of closely contested districts where you might expect candidates to tread more carefully.
Moreover, there’s a partisan lean to this that cannot be ignored. Certainly, there are incidents of antisemitism in both Democratic and Republican politics. And because American Jews (and Jewish politicians) are so overwhelmingly liberal, there are far more progressive “targets” for antisemitism than there are conservatives. Still, between Soros conspiracy theorizing and “Jews clutching money” ads, there seemed to be a noticeable step-up in GOP appeals to this sort of antisemitic sentiment that doesn’t have a clear parallel among Democrats right now. 
And Republican strategists must have come to a conclusion that these ads work. Yes, maybe they turn off some Jewish or more liberal-leaning voters. But Republican campaign operatives must think they make up for it by revving up the conservative base (or even independents – for a variety of reasons I strongly suspect that right-leaning independents might be even more susceptible to this sort of appeal). 
There was certainly no systematic punishing effect for Republicans going to this well – and so we can expect they’ll keep doing it. And that is a worrisome conclusion.

via The Debate Link https://ift.tt/2zyyHER



What secret will you take to your grave?

In Dutch, when you boil an egg and then place it into cold water to make it easier to peel an egg, it’s called “to scare” the eggs.

One day when I was about 6 or 7, my mom asked me to “scare” the eggs. So, little joker I was, lifted the lid of the pan and yelled “BOOO!”

My mom cracked up and has been telling this story ever since, for over 20 years. She’s come to love the story and still truly thinks that I wanted to really “scare” the eggs. Truth is I knew what “scaring an egg” meant and only wanted to make her laugh because she was in a sad place and time back then.

It’s made her laugh for over 20 fucking years, that means it’s the best joke I’ve ever pulled off and I’d die before I’d let her find out I was just kidding.

This is the sweetest thing.

I learned something today. You also have to scare a human before you peel them. Humans and eggs have much in common.


God I love crocs and their entire family tree so much. These are animals that have remained virtually the same for millions of years-pretty much as close to “perfect” as you can get in nature-and this highly optimized body plan is just. A fat sausage with a mouth at one end and chubby baby arms.

This is what peak performance looks like.


a toothy rug?

Did I do that right?









So, I uh…read the Wiki for this dog and uhh…

“It is described as a very versatile yet contradictory dog, being both good with children and “fit to kill any other dog of his weight”


It’s a Bedlington terrior btw, but that kind of takes away from the cryptid nature of it.

Also you guys are missing the best angle

Bedlington Terror

Fit to Kill.

That’s a charming phrase.

Sometimes it seems you find offense that we find you fascinating- but do you not find US fascinating? You’ve said so several times. I think we’re so interested in you for the same reasons you are interested in us, only this is the first time (to my knowledge) we’ve been able to openly explore you.

Offense? No. I know that sometimes it seems that I am cantankerous. That is largely for comedic purposes…to put you at ease. The only time I am ever actually angry, there will be no doubt of it,I assure you.

I don’t mind at all the you are interested. I know you are or there wouldn’t be fairy tales or televisions shows of humans running through the forests shrieking at Bigfoot. Poor bastard.

Maybe you’re a reptilian and that’s why the lizards had to seduce you and make sure the dreams were good 😂😂

-actually Troy Bolton

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