Eric Cantor, the Virginia congressman, and sole Jewish member of the House Republican Conference (I believe that there are at least two Jewish Democrats in the House, maybe even more) is now being talked about as a possible vice presidential pick for John McCain, and this news reminded me that Cantor has never retracted a particularly stupid attack launched against Barack Obama a couple of months ago. You'll recall that in an interview with me, Obama referred to the Middle East conflict as a "constant sore." The Republican House leader, John Boehner, and Cantor, one of his deputies, willfully misreading Obama's comment, and, trying to scare Jewish voters away from Obama, accused him of calling Israel itself a "sore." Here is what Cantor said:
It is truly disappointing that Senator Obama called Israel a 'constant wound,' 'constant sore,' and that it 'infect[s] all of our foreign policy.' These sorts of words and characterizations are the words of a politician with a deep misunderstanding of the Middle East and an innate distrust of Israel.
This, of course, is complete nonsense, and I let Boehner's office, and Cantor's office, know that it was complete nonsense. So far, though, no sign of a retraction. Cantor, who is said to be brighter than Boehner, should know better than to launch such foolish, unethical and refutable attacks.
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