Three-hundred forty-seven rabbis signed a letter published Wednesday, condemning Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ decision to skip the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s (AIPAC) annual conference.
Sanders announced Saturday that he would skip the conference, accusing the organization of bigotry. (RELATED: Is The Corbynization Of The Democratic Party Complete?)
“As strong supporters of the U.S.-Israel relationship and AIPAC’s role in advancing it, we reject Senator Bernie Sanders’ outrageous comment accusing AIPAC of fostering bigotry,” the rabbis wrote, according to the Jerusalem Post.
The rabbis ripped Sanders for his attacks on the organization, which has traditionally enjoyed bipartisan support among elected officials.
“AIPAC is one of the last remaining vehicles in American politics that proactively seeks to bring Americans from across the political spectrum together to achieve a common goal,” they wrote. “The AIPAC Policy Conference may be the largest political gathering of Democrats and Republicans in the entire country.”
Sanders is widely considered the front-runner for the Democratic nomination, and would become the first Jewish president in U.S. history if he wins. However, Sanders has come under fire from Jewish organizations over anti-Israel sentiments expressed by his campaign, according to USA Today.
Sanders has repeatedly trotted out campaign surrogates who support a boycott of the Jewish state, including Palestinian activist Linda Sarsour, and Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar. Sanders said during Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential debate that he would consider moving the U.S. Embassy in Israel from the nation’s capital in Jerusalem to Tel Aviv.