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Romney’s Ford Flap (What Goes Around…)

The National Jewish Democratic Council issued a statement criticizing Mitt Romney for announcing his presidential candidacy at the Henry Ford Museum in Detorit….

“NJDC is deeply troubled by Governor Romney’s choice of locations to announce his Presidential campaign,” said NJDC Executive Director Ira Forman. “Romney has been traveling the country talking about inclusiveness and understanding of people from all walks of life. Yet he chooses to kick his presidential campaign on the former estate of a well-known and outspoken anti-Semite and xenophobe. Mitt Romney’s embrace of Henry Ford and association of Ford’s legacy with his presidential campaign raises serious questions about either the sincerity of Romney’s words or his understanding of basic American history.”

In its statement, the NJDC invoked the case of Arizona’s former Republican congressman, J.D. Hayworth, who was defeated in November. Hayworth was slammed by Jewish critics for praising Ford’s ideas on the early 20th-century concept of “Americanization,” despite the automaker’s antisemitic polemics relating to the issue.

The Republican Jewish Coalition has fired back, noting that the NJDC did not object when President Bill Clinton, in 1999, delivered a speech in which he praised Ford. According to the RJC, Clinton said: “Henry Ford — a small entrepreneur — once said that the best Americans were those with ‘an infinite capacity to not know what can’t be done.’ We honor today those kinds of Americans, testament to the power of enterprise and the strength of the human spirit.”

As the RJC argues, the Jewish Democrats are guilty of a low blow in this case. But it was just a week ago that Romney took a below-the-belt shot at Hillary Clinton. As for the RJC, it really has no business throwing around claims of hypocrisy until the organization either retracts its attacks on Bill Clinton for failing to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem or spanks George W. Bush for reneging on his unfulfilled promise to do so.

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