Pelosi Comments On Protests

A planned meeting between President Joe Biden’s campaign manager and Arab and Muslim American leaders in Dearborn, Michigan has been canceled amid outrage over Biden’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war. The meeting, which was organized by Assad Turfe, Deputy County Executive of Wayne County, was supposed to provide a platform for Arab leaders to voice their concerns to the Biden campaign.

According to Turfe, the decision to cancel the meeting was made in the “best interest of the community” after receiving pressure from within the Arab community to reject any overtures from the Biden campaign until he advocates for Israel to cease its military assault on Gaza.

This move comes as a blow to the Biden campaign, which has been trying to court the Arab American community in Michigan, one of the key battleground states in the 2020 election. Michigan is home to over 300,000 Arab Americans, and losing their support could have serious consequences for the president’s reelection bid.

The cancelation of the meeting highlights the deep divide within the Arab community over Biden’s policy on Israel. Many Arab leaders have voiced their anger and disappointment over the president’s refusal to condemn Israel’s actions and his support for continued military aid to the country.

State Rep. Alabas Farhat of Dearborn, one of the invited attendees, flatly rejected the meeting, stating that it’s “unrealistic to expect that political conversations will re-secure our support for the president.” Farhat’s sentiments were echoed by other leaders who refused to meet with Biden’s campaign manager, including Dearborn Mayor Abdullah Hammoud and State Rep. Abraham Aiyash of Hamtramck.

The cancelation also raises questions about the Biden campaign’s approach to garnering support from minority groups. Instead of sending a member of the White House staff to meet with Arab leaders, the campaign chose to send its campaign manager, Julie Chavez Rodriguez. This move has been criticized as “tone-deaf” and an attempt to use the Arab community for “political expediency.”

Even some who did meet with Rodriguez, like Osama Siblani, publisher of the Arab American News, expressed their disgust with the Biden administration’s policy on Israel. Siblani, who had supported Biden in the 2020 election, warned that the president has lost the support of the Arab community and will not be able to win it back unless he takes concrete action to stop the violence in Gaza.

It seems that the Biden campaign’s strategy to engage with the Arab American community has backfired. Their attempt to appease both sides – the pro-Israel lobby and the Arab American community – has resulted in alienating both. Arab Americans in Michigan, who overwhelmingly voted for Biden in 2020, feel betrayed and are now questioning their support for the president in the upcoming election.

According to a recent poll, a plurality of likely general election voters in Michigan believe that Israel has gone “too far” in its response to Hamas. This sentiment is strongest among Democratic and independent voters who are also more likely to say that U.S. support for Israel during the conflict has been excessive.

In fact, Nancy Pelosi is facing backlash for her recent comments on the matter.

The cancelation of the meeting and the backlash from the Arab American community demonstrate the challenges the Biden administration faces in its approach to the Israel-Palestine conflict.

Detroit News