Defeated Republican Candidate Apologizes to Memphis Jews for Slur
Menu JTA Search

Defeated Republican Candidate Apologizes to Memphis Jews for Slur

Download PDF for this date

The defeated Republican candidate here for the U.S. House of Representatives, who issued a post-election statement against which many Jews here had protested, today apologized to the Jewish community and asked local Jews “and all others who may have been offended to forgive me.”

The unsuccessful candidate, Robert B. James, sent his apology to the Hebrew Watchman, local Jewish weekly, whose editor reported he had received protests against Mr. James’ post-election statement from “many irate Jewish citizens.”

In his statement, after the national elections, Mr. James had said that he had received “an overwhelmingly high percentage of the votes of the respectable people in the community.” He had also stated: “I had hoped against hope that the Jewish group would see things my way. I am a businessman. They are businessmen. Apparently I didn’t succeed. I am amazed that I couldn’t. If ever there was a group that should be conservative, they should.”

In reply to that statement, James E. Irwin, the county Democratic chairman here, said: “Mr. James’ reference to the Jewish vote and respectable voters is the most bigoted statement I have ever heard from a major candidate.” Mr. James telephoned the editor of The Hebrew Watchman and apologized for his statement, then wrote a letter of apology printed in the Jewish weekly.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund