News Release

AIPAC “Astroturf Groups” Flooding Airwaves Against Progressive Donna Edwards

Biden is visiting Israel next week.RICHARD SILVERSTEIN, richards1052@gmail.com, @richards1052  Silverstein is an independent journalist and researcher writing about Israeli foreign policy and covert operations. He writes at Tikun Olam and contributes to Middle East Eye, Jacobin magazine and other outlets.
He just wrote the in-depth piece “AIPAC Astroturf Groups Plow Millions into Defeating Progressive Democrats.”

He notes that the powerful American Israel Public Affairs Committee has been closely aligned with Republicans and that 40 of the “GOP lawmakers endorsed by AIPAC voted against certifying Joe Biden as president.” And he examines the work of Democratic Majority for Israel, “which poured $1.4-million to dent Bernie Sanders’ popularity during the 2020 presidential primaries” and has targeted numerous progressive Democrats.

His latest piece also scrutinizes how another AIPAC spinoff calling itself the United Democracy Project is targeting Democrats that AIPAC doesn’t like. He writes: “UDP may spend money to elect Democrats, but it raises money almost solely from Republican billionaire donors. …

“The Democrats on its hit list include African-American Donna Edwards who is such a ‘danger’ to Israel that UDP is spending $2.5-million (so far) to defeat her. She tweeted last week that it spent $800,000 in a single week (!) on attack ads. Her primary opponent got over $600,000 from the PAC.” The money has been poured into attack ads in Maryland.

The Intercept recently reported that even pro-Israeli Nancy Pelosi “rebukes AIPAC ads against Donna Edwards.” The ads don’t actually mention Israel, rather they claim that Edwards had poor constituent services, a charge that The Intercept notes has been “rebuked” by elected officials, labor leaders and constituents supporting Edwards.

The rightwing pro-Israeli Jewish Insider reports: “Ivey now leads Edwards ahead of MD-4 Democratic primary.”

Edwards visited Gaza in early 2009, a rarity for a member of Congress.

A prior target of UDP was Nina Turner. See recent article from Jewish Insider: “Bill de Blasio says he no longer supports AIPAC and wishes Nina Turner was in Congress.” Other targets include Summer Lee in Pennsylvania and Jessica Cisneros in Texas.