WASHINGTON (Jun. 29)
The White House will announce officially soon President Carter’s selection of Edward Sanders, a Los Angeles lawyer and former chairman of the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) as his principal advisor on matters affecting the American Jewish community. The move was seen as part of the Administration’s efforts to repair its relations with American Jewry which have become severely strained over U.S. Middle East policy.
Sanders’ title has not yet been decided, White House sources said. Since the resignation of Presidential assistant Mark Siegel, the President’s principal liaison with the Jewish community over White House activities affecting Israel, most of the liaison duties have been carried out by Presidential Counsel Robert Lipshutz and Domestic Affairs Chief Advisor Stuart Eizenstat. Since Siegel’s departure, in a clash over the Administration’s Mideast policies, the President has named Anne Wexler and Gerald Rafshoon as political and media advisors respectively.
Sanders resigned as chairman of AIPAC when he joined Carter’s election campaign organization in 1976 as deputy national campaign director. He has been serving this year as an unpaid consultant to the President. In his new past he will have offices at the White House and at the State Department. Sanders is among the 27 prominent Americans, mostly Jewish leaders, who are leaving for Israel today as part of Vice President Walter Mondale’s party at the invitation of the Vice President. A graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles and the University of Southern California Law School, Sanders is a partner in a law firm dealing with corporate matters. Apart from heading AIPAC he has served as chairman of the United Jewish Welfare Fund-Israel Emergency Fund campaign, as vice-president of the Council of Jewish Federations (CJF) and as an executive committee member of the United Jewish Appeal.