Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

Arizona Democratic Party office opening disrupted by pro-Palestinian protesters

By 37ci3 Jun1,2024



TUCSON, Ariz. – An Arizona Democratic field office opening ceremony was interrupted Friday afternoon by high-profile politicians. Pro-Palestine protesters – four separate times.

The third and fourth breaks Rep. Ruben Gallego, a The Democratic Senate is hopeful, was speaking on stage. A fourth protester stood inches away from the congressman and pointed the finger at him, yelling, “You’re getting money from AIPAC.”

The protester then fell on top of an employee after being pushed by a woman sitting in the front row and was then forcibly removed from the venue.

After the commotion died down, Gallego apologized.

“We have a job here,” the congressman said. “Let’s remember: As Democrats, we have a big tent. We all want a big solution and a solution for the Middle East,” said Gallego, a Marine veteran who was deployed to Iraq.

“I’m sorry we weren’t there. But you actually have a party that is looking for something,” he said.

Former state representative Kirsten Engel, who is running for Congress in Arizona, and Tiffany Muller, president of End Citizens United, were also interrupted by pro-Palestinian protesters. Sen. Mark Kelly, D-Ariz. and former MP Gabby Giffords also spoke, but their speeches were not interrupted.

All the breaks were drowned out by their chants.four more years” Nearly 200 Arizonans packed the Democratic field office to celebrate the inauguration.

Israeli-American protester Ori Green, 52, who attended the event, told NBC News that the protest was the only way he could feel heard.

“Every day for months and months and months, I made phone calls to Kelly’s office and Gallego’s office and begged them to talk about a permanent ceasefire,” Green, who served in the Israeli Defense Ministry, told NBC News. Forces.

“I am an Israeli citizen. I am Jewish. My mother is the daughter of Holocaust survivors. We care about Israel,” said the accountant from Tucson. “Most of my family is there. I love Israel and what they are doing is bad for Israel. This. This is bad for Israel and killing children can never, never, never be justified.”

Green, like the protester who shouted at Gallego, along with Sen. Mark Kelly, cited contributions from the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, a pro-Israel lobby, as part of his frustration with lawmakers.

Federal Election Commission campaign finance disclosures do not show AIPAC’s contributions to Gallego or Kelly’s campaigns this year or last year. Recent campaign donations made over the past few weeks have not yet been reflected in FEC data.

AIPAC donated $5,000 to Kelly’s 2022 campaign, where he defeated Republican Blake Masters. That same year, AIPAC donated more than $26,000 to Gallego’s campaign, according to FEC records.

Despite his displeasure with the Biden administration’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war, Green still plans to run for president in November.

“I’m probably going to be a baby and a fool and vote for Biden safely, but I’m not going to feel good about it,” he said.

Hours before the field office event, Biden announced that Israel has proposed a three-part plan this will ultimately lead to a permanent ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.

A spokesman for the Biden-Harris campaign in Arizona told NBC News when asked to comment on the delays in opening the field office: “The president shares the goal of ending the violence and achieving a just, lasting peace in the Middle East. He works tirelessly for this.”

Democrats have previously faced pro-Palestinian demonstrations in Arizona. The first lady was Jill Biden interrupted several times During his speech in Tucson in March, he was interrupted by a protester as Vice President Kamala Harris stood over him. The “Fight for Reproductive Freedoms” tour about a week later. Earlier this month, eight teachers walked out during the first lady’s speech at the National Education Association in Phoenix in a silent protest against the war in Gaza.



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