Romney uses Israel as a fundraising tool
August 6, 2012 1 Comment
By Lauren Appelbaum, Political Director
Washington, Aug. 6 – Mitt Romney is using his recent trip to Israel as a fundraising tool. In an email sent to supporters Sunday evening, the Romney campaign directed people to a new video advertisement, Israel, a Cherished Ally. The webpage also asks people to donate to the campaign.
Both the email and the video highlight comments the presumptive Republican presidential nominee made during a speech in Jerusalem last week.
“You can’t get much closer to the ideals and convictions of the United States than you do in Israel,” the Romney campaign writes in the email. “We’re part of the great fellowship of democracies. We speak the same language of freedom and justice and believe in the right of every person to live in peace.”
“And, like the U.S., Israel respects the rights of people of all religions,” the announcer in the advertisement says.
The ad ends with Romney’s controversial quote of him saying it was a “deeply moving experience to be in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel.”
Romney did not explicitly promise to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem as George W. Bush did. Bush failed to follow through on his pledge.
Romney stirred controversy during his Israel visit by suggesting that cultural differences explain why the Israelis are so much more economically successful than Palestinians.
“Culture makes all the difference,” Romney said. “And as I come here and I look out over this city and consider the accomplishments of the people of this nation, I recognize the power of at least culture and a few other things.”
He added, “As you come here and you see the G.D.P. per capita, for instance, in Israel, which is about $21,000, and compare that with the G.D.P. per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality. And that is also between other countries that are near or next to each other. Chile and Ecuador, Mexico and the United States.”
While in Israel, Romney held a fundraiser for American citizens living in or visiting Israel which raised one million dollars.