Kustoff invited to White House Hanukkah Party; Cohen (and other Jewish Democrats) snubbed

President Donald Trump invited the two Republicans members of Congress who are Jewish – Tennessee’s Rep.  David Kustoff and New York Rep. Lee Zeldin – to the White House Hanukkah Party but excluded Jewish Democrats including Tennessee’s Rep. Steve Cohen, reports the New York Times. That was break with tradition, which under past presidents has made the gathering non-partisan.

Trump also did not invite Reform Jewish leaders who have been critical of him or progressive Jewish activists who have differed with him on policy issues.

The move injected a partisan tinge into a normally bipartisan at the White House, where on Thursday Mr. Trump spoke to a crowd standing among Christmas trees.

“I know for a fact there are of a lot of happy people in this room,” Mr. Trump said to raucous whoops and applause, adding simply “Jerusalem.”

He wished those assembled a Happy Hanukkah, then said, “I think this one will go down as especially special.” Hanukkah Party

…”It’s deeply unfortunate that the White House Hanukkah Party – bringing together Jewish and non-Jewish leaders alike to celebrate the Festival of Lights since 2001 – has turned into a partisan affair under this administration,” said Rep. Nita M. Lowery of New York said in a statement.

This year, officials slashed the size of the annual reception, inviting around 300 guests to one soiree instead of hosting 1,700 over two parties as in the past.

Note: There are 30 members of Congress deemed Jewish in a Pew Research Center survey of congressional religious affiliations – two senators and the rest representatives. All except Kustoff and Zeldin are Democrats.

Cohen is sponsor of a resolution calling for the impeachment of Trump. Previous post HERE.

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