By Jackson Richman, JNS
Pro-Israel America, a grassroots organization dedicated to electing pro-Israel members of Congress, reported that it has raised more than $2 million for candidates in the 2020 election cycle, 81 percent of which were contributions under $200.
In doing so, it announced that it had met its first-cycle goal in contributions from grassroots activists committed to advancing and strengthening the U.S.-Israel relationship, the organization told JNS.
“This important milestone has proven the effectiveness of grassroots activism in the pro-Israel community, and we thank our 150,000-and-growing member base that has helped us reach this goal,” said executive director Jeff Mendelsohn. “This achievement demonstrates that the American public understands the importance of the U.S.-Israel relationship.”
Since its launch in March 2019, Pro-Israel America has endorsed 52 congressional candidates who support and promote the U.S.-Israel relationship: 21 Republicans and 31 Democrats, exemplifying the bipartisan nature of the group’s work.
To date, 35 candidates it has endorsed have won their primaries, including Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio), for whom the organization raised more than $83,000, and Kay Granger (R-Texas), for whom the group raised more than $42,000.
At the same time, it has suffered defeats, most notably in New York’s 16th Congressional District, where longtime incumbent Rep. Eliot Engel—a well-known figure in the pro-Israel community who is also the chairman of the influential U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee—lost to Jamaal Bowman, a progressive endorsed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y), as well as Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
Pro-Israel America gave Engel at least $127,981 towards the race.
In a statement, Pro-Israel America board chairman Jonathan Missner said “all eyes are now on Minnesota’s fifth district, where Democrat Antone Melton-Meaux is running against freshman Congresswoman Ilhan Omar in the Democratic primary.”
Ahead of the Aug. 11 primary, Pro-Israel America has raised $397,000 for Melton-Meaux.