WASHINGTON (JTA) — John Delaney, the Democratic congressional candidate in a redrawn Maryland district, met with Israeli politicians and businessmen on a trip to the Jewish state.
Delaney returned last week from a two-day trip to Israel that also included a helicopter ride over the Gaza Strip and parts of the country’s security fence.
He flew to Israel on a trip coordinated by the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington but for which he paid his own way.
Delaney is running for a seat held since 1993 by Roscoe Bartlett, a Republican. Bartlett also has been to Israel, arriving there in time to celebrate Israel’s 63rd Independence Day a little more than a year ago. At that time he called Israel “a bulwark for freedom and an engine of economic progress.”
Their 6th District was redistricted since the last election and now covers less of the more conservative Baltimore and Harford counties and more of liberal Montgomery County.
Shortly after returning to Maryland, Delaney said, “I went there with a perspective that Israel is a really great partner” and in favor of a two-state solution, adding that he learned a lot while fomenting those views.
While in Sderot, a city in the south of Israel that is the target of regular Kassam rocket attacks from Gaza, Delaney visited the police station and viewed parts of at least 50 rockets that had exploded there.
Ron Halber, executive director of the JCRC, said his organization offers trips such as this one to interested area politicians.