Reference is made in the Pol Position column "In some ways, we are just like Ed Koch" (7/21/11) to Mr. Koch's statements that voters in the 9th Congressional District, formerly represented by Anthony Weiner, would be well advised to vote for Republican Bob Turner because of Barack Obama's anti-Israel positions.
Mr. Koch's philosophy is that a Republican victory in a district with a large Jewish constituency would send a powerful message to the president about his repudiation of Israel.
Various sources place the percentage of Jewish voters who supported Barack Obama in the 2008 election anywhere from 72 to 78 percent. In any case an overwhelming majority, and many feel betrayed by Obama's arguments that Israel return to 1967 borders and his support of Palestinians.
I did not vote for Koch in any of his mayoral races, but that doesn't mean that I was always in disagreement with him or that I didn't respect him. This is one case where I feel not only is he right, but I give him credit for speaking up.
Second to African-Americans, Jewish voters have the second highest rate of loyalty to the Democratic Party. Much of what they gripe about is directly due to their voting patterns. They are free to vote as they please, but they have no right to complain when the solution is within their reach. The sky is not going to fall on them, nor will their wallets be empty if they vote for a Republican candidate.
This past weekend Ed Koch formally endorsed Bob Turner. I feel he's made it pretty clear why he has done so, without attacking Turner's opponent. It's up to the voters. They can seize the moment, but they cannot complain when they had an opportunity to effect the change they seek.