Zeldin, the only Jewish Republican in the United States Congress, has faced heavy criticism from his constituents over his support for President Donald Trump’s radical agenda, including his Muslim and refugee ban.
“Rep. Zeldin can try to ignore the voices of his constituents, but we are committed to making ourselves heard and showing that the 1st District of New York rejects the hateful agenda being advocated by Zeldin and President Trump,” said Tali Hinkis of Setauket, a Bend the Arc: New York member. “Zeldin’s support for Trump’s horrific, dangerous Muslim ban betrays the fundamental Jewish and American principles of justice, equality and treating members of all races and religions with dignity and respect.”
"I am a senior citizen and as a child, I can remember my father in tears when he could not get visas for his family even though he was a U.S. citizen himself,” said Judith Wishnia, also a Bend the Arc: New York member from Setauket. “The U.S. did not welcome Jews fleeing Hitler and so instead my father’s family was massacred - locked in a synagogue which was set on fire. We now have a quasi-president, Steve Bannon, who has promoted racist, anti-semitic and anti-Muslim ideas, and who is behind this Muslim ban. How can Zeldin support these policies? He owes us an explanation.”
Bend the Arc: New York is a chapter of Bend the Arc Jewish Action, which has been a leader in New York and across the country in rallying the American Jewish community to fight back against the Trump administration’s policies. The organization has empowered Jews to take action in their communities and build a movement of Jewish resistance to Trump’s agenda. An open letter co-authored by Stosh Cotler, CEO of Bend the Arc Jewish Action, expressing solidarity with those threatened by the Trump administration received more than 45,000 signatures. In addition, a joint petition with the Muslim Public Affairs Council calling for white nationalist Steve Bannon’s to resign as White House chief strategist received an additional 29,000 signatures.