In a response to the former speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi’s comments Friday that Jews who support Republicans are “being exploited,” House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), the only Jewish Republican in Congress, said “It is both patronizing and deeply insulting for Nancy Pelosi to suggest any Jew is ‘exploited’ for their political beliefs or that support for Israel is somehow an ‘excuse’ for anything.”

“Such thinking diminishes the importance of issues affecting Jews everywhere,” Cantor added.

Pelosi, in an interview last Friday with the Bloomberg news service, also said that many Republicans “are using Israel as an excuse, what they really want are tax cuts for the wealthy.” She also said that President Obama “has been a staunch supporter of Israel.”

Responding to the observation that Republican Jews are politically active due to their support of Israel, Pelosi said “they’re being exploited. And they’re smart people. They follow these issues. But they have to know the facts. And the fact is that President Obama has been the strongest person in terms of sanctions on Iran, which is important to Israel. He’s been the strongest person on whether it’s Iron Dome, David’s Sling, any of these weapons systems and initiatives that relate to Israel.”

Cantor told the CBS newsmagazine “60 Minutes” in a January interview that the Jewish tendency to vote Democratic has been the “bane of my existence.”