Letter to the Editor: Schneider for Congress

Ilya Sheyman - Wrong on Tactics, Wrong on Facts, Wrong for the Tenth District

Over the last several weeks, Tenth District congressional candidate Ilya Sheyman and groups backing him such as MoveOn.Org have been attacking rival Brad Schneider rather than promoting any positive ideas of their own.  They are denouncing four (4) out of the over seventy (70) political contributions Brad has made since 2000.  As if 90% percent of his contributions to Democrats is not sufficient to call Brad a Democrat.  By whose measure? 

As Brad has repeated since he entered the race last summer, 90% of his contributions were to Democrats, and 100% of his contributions were in the context of a candidate's position supporting a strong U.S. - Israel relationship.  Sheyman and his backers have cynically tried to distort Schneider's support of Israel to claim that such support also means he is anti-women, anti-seniors, anti-environment, anti-progressive.  Their arguments seem to be that it is not possible to be a "true progressive" and a supporter of Israel 

The Sheyman team's attacks on Schneider are so outrageous that Naral and JACPAC issued statements stating unequivocally that Brad is 100% pro-choice, and JAC noting that Sheyman is running to the left of Schneider on all issues, including Israel. 

And while Brad Schneider has a lifetime record for support for both liberal causes, including support of Israel, Mr. Sheyman has been a frequent speaker to, and received the endorsement from the Progressive Democrats of America (PDA).  This is the same group that last year endorsed the second Gaza Flotilla.  PDA also has an Israel/Palestine Action Group who, in their own words “joins with the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation (www.endtheoccupation.org/) in an effort to "condition" and/or suspend U.S. military aid to Israel until there is an end to Israel's siege of Gaza and to Israel's occupation of the West Bank and until the Israeli and Palestinian people have achieved a mutually acceptable just peace. To these ends PDA and the Israel Palestine Action Group (I/PAG) engage in lobbying and legislative campaigns at the congressional district and senatorial levels of the U.S. Congress.” These are not the types of organization that strong supporters of Israel support and take guidance from.  If anything, Schneider is the one who should be questioning Sheyman's associations.
It may be that these associations are a reflection of Mr. Sheyman’s youth and inexperience.  But such questionable positions are not necessarily new.   Mr. Sheyman has taken harsh stands with respect to Israel as far back as 2003 when he authored and signed a resolution calling on the U.S. to sanction Israel (http://www.shsdebate.com/uploads/bp/03-04/03-04%20icda%201%20bills.pdf page 15).  Though this particular statement was eight years ago, and Mr. Sheyman was a high school senior at the time, it certainly fits in with the rhetoric of PDA and I/PAG.
Those in the community that don't want to take the risk and would like to see a proven and consistent leader on behalf of Israel in Congress are supporting Brad Schneider.  Mr. Schneider has been affiliated with and served in leadership positions on numerous organizations in both the secular and the Jewish communities for over 30 years.  He has a long record of supporting Israel and supporting those who support Israel. 


David Kirshenbaum, Northbrook

Mary Poppins March 19, 2012 at 11:41 PM
I'm voting for Dold, progressive is just another word for liberal willing to spend our money on programs like ObamaCare.
Carol Kraines March 20, 2012 at 12:10 AM
There are a lot of misperceptions about Obamacare. It actually saves the tax payers money. When uninsured people get sick or have an accident, they go to an ER and receive "free care" ie at taxpayer expense. Under Obamacare, everyone must have coverage - so those ER visits and follow up care are covered by their insurance - not taxpayers.
liz albert March 20, 2012 at 01:31 AM
Carol, Another great post! I just want to congratulate you on your measured, fact-filled arguments. Ilya is lucky to have you as a supporter.
John Utah March 20, 2012 at 06:39 PM
@Carol - It's frightening that you believe that. The eventual rise in insurance premiums will far overtake any savings from reduced ER visits. If anything, ER visits will increase with people choosing to go to the ER for the sniffles. Once state exchanges take over with 300M people on the rolls, premiums/taxes will go through the roof. Insurance should actual be for insurance, not pre-paid medical care.
Carol Kraines March 20, 2012 at 09:02 PM
Admittedly, I have not read the entire health care bill - but it makes basic economic sense that if everyone is covered that means more people have primary care docs ie fewer visits to the ER and fewer long hospitalizations from untreated acute or chronic illnesses. Ergo - costs will be reduced. Also the exchanges will offer competition for plans, which will also reduce costs.


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