The J Street Vote: Updates and Corrections

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Here are some corrections and updates to my earlier post on who voted how in the Conference of Presidents vote on J Street’s application for membership.

1.) I’ve learned from several sources that Mercaz USA, the Conservative movement’s Zionist arm, in fact voted “No,” breaking with the denomination’s other wings.

2.) On the other hand, I was wrong about Women of Reform Judaism being absent. I’d been told nobody had made it because of their leadership mission in Israel this week. In fact they had a representative there who voted “Yes.”

3.) I’ve been told that Jewish Federations of North America and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee abstained (not confirmed).

Again, the votes on J Street’s application were 17 “Yes,” 22 “No,” 3 “Abstain” and (apparently) 7 absent.

My current tally shows all 17 Yes votes accounted for (18 organizations listed, as Jewish Labor Committee and Workmen’s Circle share a single vote). 14 of 22 No votes accounted for. 2 of 3 abstentions accounted for.

Of the remainder, 5 were present but their votes are unknown; they either voted No or abstained. For 6 others, no information is available. 2 of this last group must have been absent; the other 4 either voted No or abstained. Again, out of this combined group of 11 unknowns, one abstained and two were absent. All the rest (8) voted No.

Here, then, is the rollcall according to my current information:


General/Non-ideological: Anti-Defamation League; American Zionist Movement (confederation of U.S. Zionist organizations); Jewish Council for Public Affairs (confederation of advocacy agencies & local Jewish councils); HIAS.

Left-leaning: Ameinu (Labor Zionist); Americans for Peace Now; Jewish Labor Committee; Workmen’s Circle.

Conservative: United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism (congregations); Women’s League for Conservative Judaism; Rabbinical Assembly.

Reform: Union for Reform Judaism (congregations); Central Conference of American Rabbis; ARZA (Association of Reform Zionists of America), Women of Reform Judaism.

Women (non-denominational): Jewish Women International (former name B’nai B’rith Women); Hadassah Women’s Zionist Organization; National Council of Jewish Women.


General/Non-ideological: Alpha Epsilon Pi (college fraternity): America-Israel Friendship League; NCSJ (former name National Conference on Soviet Jewry).

Right-leaning: American Friends of Likud; CAMERA (Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America); JINSA (Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs); ZOA (Zionist Organization of America).

Orthodox: OU (Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America); National Council of Young Israel (Orthodox congregations); Rabbinical Council of America; Religious Zionists of America; Amit Women (Orthodox Zionist); Emunah Women (Orthodox Zionist).

Conservative: Mercaz USA.


(reported, unconfirmed) Jewish Federations of North America; American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee.

PRESENT, VOTE UNKNOWN (“no” or abstained):

AIPAC; American Jewish Committee; B’nai Zion; B’nai B’rith International; Jewish National Fund.


Jewish Community Centers Association, Naamat USA (Labor Zionist women), World ORT, ORT America, American Gathering/Federation of Jewish Holocaust Survivors.

NO INFORMATION (either voted “no,” abstained or absent):

American Jewish Congress; American Sephardi Federation; Friends of the Israel Defense Forces; Israel Bonds/Development Corp. for Israel; Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem; Women’s International Zionist Organization.

Written by

J.J. Goldberg

J.J. Goldberg

Jonathan Jeremy “J.J.” Goldberg is editor-at-large of the Forward, where he served as editor in chief for seven years (2000-2007).

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