Jewish Victories in the Elections
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Jewish Victories in the Elections

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All Jewish incumbents seeking re-election to the Senate and House won Tuesday. In addition, one Jewish newcomer was elected to the House, Benjamin Cardin (D. Md.).

This keeps the number of Jews in the Senate at eight, evenly split between Democrats and Republicans. In the House the number of Jews in the 100th Congress will be 29, one less than at present because two incumbents gave up their House seats to make unsuccessful bids for the Senate.

Rep. Ken Kramer (R. Col.) was defeated Tuesday by Rep. Timothy Wirth (D. Col.) for the Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Gary Hart. Rep. Bobbi Fiedler (R. Cal.) lost earlier in the year in the California Republican primary election for the Senate.

However, the number of Jews in the House could still be 30 next year depending on what happens in New York’s 27th Congressional District where Rosemary Pooler, a Democrat who is active in the Syracuse Jewish community, is locked in a close race with Rep. George Wortley (R. NY). The outcome is expected to depend on absentee ballots.


Among several Jews who failed to win House seats was Bella Abzug, who in 1970 was the first Jewish woman elected to the House. A Democrat, she served three terms in the House, representing a Manhattan district. But on Tuesday, running in Westchester, Abzug failed to unseat Rep. Joseph DioGuardi, a Republican, elected to his second term.

If Pooler is elected, the House will again have three Jewish women. The two incumbents are Reps. Barbara Boxer and Sala Burton (both D. Cal.).

In the Senate races. Missouri Lieutenant Governor Harriett Woods, a Democrat, lost in her second attempt to become the first Jewish woman elected to the Senate. She was defeated by former Governor Christopher Bond, a Republican, for the seat being vacated by Sen. Thomas Eagleton (D. Mo.).

Two other Jews running for the Senate also lost. Kramer and Mark Green, a Democrat, who failed to upset Sen. Alfonse D’Amato (R. NY). The two Jewish Senators re-elected were Sens. Arlen Specter (R. Pa.) and Warren Rudman (R. Vt.).


Meanwhile, with the House remaining under Democratic control and the Democrats taking over the Senate by a 55-45 margin, little change is expected in the strong support for Israel and Soviet Jewry in Congress. However, church-state and other social issues sought by the Reagan Administration and viewed as dangerous by the Jewish community would appear to have little chance of passage during the next two years.

Leading supporters of Israel, ranging from governor liberal Democrats to conservative Republicans, were re-elected to the Senate. Among these are: Sens. Alan Cranston (D. Cal.), Christopher Dodd (D. Conn.), Daniel Inouye (D. Hawaii), D’ Amato, Bob Packwood (R. Ore.) and Robert Kasten (R. Wis.).

While the number of Jews in the Senate are evenly divided among Democrats and Republicans, in the House the Jewish contingent is overwhelmingly Democrat, 25-4.


Jewish Senators are: Rudy Boschwitz (R. Minn.), Chic Hecht (R. Nev.), Frank Lautenberg (D. NJ), Carl Levin (D. Mich.), Howard Metzenbaum (D. Ohio), Warren Rudman (R. NH), Arlen Specter (R. Pa.) and Edward Zorinsky (R. Neb.)


Jewish members of the House are: Gary Ackerman (D. NY), Anthony Beilenson (D. Cal.), Howard Berman (D. Cal.), Barbara Boxer (D. Cal.), Sala Burton (D. Cal.), Benjamin Cardin (D. MD), Ben Erdreich (D. Ala.), Barney Frank (D. Mass.), Martin Frost (D. Texas).

Also, Sam Gejdenson (D. Conn.), Benjamin Gilman (R. NY), Dan Glickman (D. Kan.), Willis Gradison (R. Ohio), Bill Green (R. NY), William Lehman (D. Fla.), Sander Levin (D. Mich.), Mel Levine (D. Cal.) Tom Lantos (D. Cal.), John Miller (R. Wash.).

And, James Scheuer (D. NY), Charles Schumer (D. NY), Norman Sisisky (D. VA), Lawrence Smith (D. Fla.), Stephen Solarz (D. NY), Henry Waxman (D. Cal.), Ted Weiss (D. NY), Howard Wolpe (D. Mich.), Ron Wyden (D. Ore.) and Sidney Yates (R. Ill.).


In other election results, one Jew was elected governor while the nation’s only incumbent Jewish governor was still in doubt whether she had won re-election. Both are Democrats.

Neil Goldschmidt, former Mayor of Portland and Secretary of Transportation in the Carter Administration, was elected Governor of Oregon. But Madeleine Kunin, seeking her second term as Governor of Vermont, received the largest number of votes but apparently failed to win the 50 percent majority required by the Vermont State Constitution. This means the decision will be left to the Republican-controlled Legislature.

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