Menu JTA Search

Liberal Republicans Regret Elimination of Israel from Party Plank

Liberal Republicans today expressed regret at the action of the conservative-dominated Platform Committee which substituted a vague Middle Eastern plank for the strong pro-Israel policy statement the liberals advocated.

Liberal Republican comment today was that the trend of the convention left them no alternative but to make the best of the platform situation. They called attention to another plank which contained a denunciation of Soviet anti-Semitism.

Pro-Israel Republicans were annoyed by the fact that the convention departed from tradition followed by both parties since 1944 — a tradition that was actually initiated by the Republicans. Since 1944, both parties adopted planks that contained warm and open support, first of Jewish aspirations in Palestine, and later of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the State of Israel.

Pro-Israel voices were raised during the closed session of the Platform Committee. But they were hopelessly outnumbered by conservative members. The main objection of the liberals is that elimination of specific reference to Israel leaves the Middle East Plank obscure and virtually meaningless. But hope was voiced that even this plank could be favorably implemented and might turn out “not so bad.”

Sen. Thomas H. Kuchel of California, in opening here today the 28th Republican Convention, appealed for a strong civil rights stand by the convention and for defense of minority rights. His speech reflected the liberal, pro-Scranton Republican faction. Sen. Kuchel said the party had in the past dedicated itself to equal treatment under the law for all, “rich or poor, black or white, Christian or Jew.”

NEXT STORY