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January 13, 2017 1:50 pm

Dershowitz on Growing Partisan Gap on Israel: We Must Work Harder to Persuade Young Liberals of Justice of Jewish State’s Cause

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Professor Alan Dershowitz. Photo: Screenshot.

Professor Alan Dershowitz. Photo: Screenshot.

A new poll that showed a growing gap in Republican and Democratic views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is part of a “worldwide trend that can’t be ignored,” an internationally renowned American legal expert told The Algemeiner on Friday.

“We have to work harder to persuade young liberals of the justice of Israel’s cause,” Professor Alan Dershowitz, a Democrat, said in response to the Pew Research Center survey results published Thursday, according to which 74% of Republicans sympathize more with Israel over the Palestinians, while only 33% of Democrats feel the same way, signifying the largest partisan divide on the issue since 1978.

“We cannot allow Israel to become only a conservative or Republican cause,” Dershowitz continued. “We must work even harder to keep it bipartisan.”

Furthermore, Dershowitz declared, “This new polling information makes it more important than ever for pro-Israel Democrats to strongly oppose the appointment of Keith Ellison — an anti-Israel Democrat — to head the Democratic Party.”

Two weeks ago, Dershowitz said he would resign his longtime membership to the party if Ellison, a Muslim-American congressman from Minnesota, becomes the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

In an op-ed published by The Algemeiner at the end of November, Dershowitz explained his opposition to the 53-year-old Ellison’s candidacy, as “it would move the party in the direction of left-wing extremism at a time when centrist stability is required.”

Choosing Ellison to run the DNC would be “a self-inflicted wound on the Democratic Party at this critical time in its history,” Dershowitz wrote.

At a recent Zionist Organization of America dinner, Dershowitz said, “I will fight to keep the Democratic Party pro-Israel. It won’t be easy. And it won’t be any easier if Keith Ellison is appointed the head of the DNC.”

Overall, the new Pew Research Center poll found that 51% of Americans favor Israel in the conflict, with only 19% backing the Palestinians.

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