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Republican Jewish Coalition sitting out Trump’s effort to overturn election

Two GOP Jews in Congress have yet to clarify their position on move by growing number of party members to not certify Biden’s win

US President Donald Trump walks to the Oval Office from the South Lawn of the White House after returning from Florida, in Washington, DC on December 31 2020. (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images via JTA)
US President Donald Trump walks to the Oval Office from the South Lawn of the White House after returning from Florida, in Washington, DC on December 31 2020. (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images via JTA)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Republican Jewish Coalition is not taking a position on efforts by US President Donald Trump and a number of congressional Republicans to obstruct certification of Joe Biden’s election to the presidency.

Meanwhile, the two Jewish Republicans in Congress aren’t saying where they stand on a quixotic effort by a growing number of Republicans not to certify Biden’s win.

Those Republicans — who have Trump’s backing — falsely claim that Biden was fraudulently elected. Courts and electoral officials, including Republicans, have repeatedly refuted the claims.

“We aren’t getting involved in internal GOP congressional debates,” RJC director Matt Brooks said Monday in an email when asked to comment on the controversy currently dividing congressional Republicans.

Matt Brooks, executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition, addresses the group’s annual confab on March 16, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada (Courtesy)

Trump, who this week was taped trying to convince Georgia officials to “find” thousands of votes that would sway that state’s outcome in his favor, backs the effort to overturn his electoral loss when Congress meets Wednesday to certify Biden’s win in the Electoral College.

The initiative, at first favored by a handful of far-right backbenchers, now reportedly has the backing of 140 Republicans in the US House of Representatives and 12 in the Senate.

Meanwhile, a number of Republicans have forcefully rejected the maneuver as unconstitutional and a threat to American democracy.

RJC allies are on both sides of the divide; Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has become a leading spokesman for challenging Biden’s win and Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the third-ranked Republican in the House, has condemned the effort.

US President-elect Joe Biden waves from the stage as he campaigns for for Georgia Democratic candidates in Atlanta, January 4, 2021. (Carolyn Kaster/AP)

It’s not clear where the two Jewish Republicans in Congress stand. Lee Zeldin of New York did not respond to queries by press time. But in December, Zeldin was among 126 House GOP members who joined a legal challenge to the vote in some states Biden won. The Supreme Court threw out the challenge.

The office of David Kustoff of Tennessee said he would put out a statement on Wednesday.

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