Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) Executive Director Matt Brooks announced today that former U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman will join the RJC as a consultant and strategic advisor.
The Senate election race between Coleman and DFL candidate Al Franken ended provisionally with Franken ahead by 225 votes, according to the Minnesota Canvassing Board, out of some 3 million votes cast. On Wednesday, a three-judge panel of Minnesota Supreme Court justices heard arguments from the candidates’ lawyers, on the legal challenge filed by Coleman.
Jay Weiner, reporting for MinnPost.com, described the scene in court yesterday: “[T]here were enough attorneys to turn the lovely oak-trimmed courtroom, with the long chandelier hanging from the skylight 50 feet above, into a dandy basketball court.Â Franken had five on his side. Coleman had a grand total of six lawyers, including a newly acquired media point guard named Ben Ginsberg.”
The Pioneer Press (St. Paul) political blog, in their report on the hearing, noted that “Ginsberg is the second reputed heavy-hitter to be publicly added to the Coleman team of late. Last week, media-friendly Minneapolis attorney Joe Friedberg was added to the team. He, too, appeared in court today.”
Regarding the RJC job, Brooks said, “We are thrilled and honored to have Norm Coleman join us at the RJC at this critical time. We look forward to having the benefit of his experience and wise counsel to help the RJC plot its future course. We are confident that in a few months Senator Coleman will return to his seat in the Senate, but until that time, we are eager for him to travel across the country on our behalf and to be an important voice within the organization.”
The RJC press release noted that Coleman will provide “strategic guidance on important policy matters affecting the organization and the Jewish community. In addition, Coleman, a tremendously popular speaker, will travel around the country on behalf of the RJC, speaking in Jewish communities across the country on the state of current affairs.”
Coleman’s duties also will include helping the RJC “recruit and expand its national leadership base. Coleman will not engage in any lobbying on behalf of the organization,” according to the statement.
I’m not getting why the RJC would hire this person. Isn’t Coleman an apostate who converted to marry his Catholic wife? (The one who doesn’t live with him.)
Does he belong to any synagogue? Are his children Jewish? Does he support Federation or any Jewish causes? This is public information. Details, details.
Last I saw, he was standing with anti-choice X-tians on the steps of the capitol.
Coleman has been supportive of local Jewish communal activities. He is chummy with the Lubavitchers. Also, he declared after the High Holy Days, after fasting and praying, that he would stop running negative ads in his Senate contest against Al Franken, and Dean Barkley of the Indepedence Party.
He is anti-abortion and left the DFL (Democratic-Farmer-Labor) Party some years ago, after realizing that his views on the issue limited his prospects for getting endorsed for anything.