JCRC Response to the Invocation of an Antisemitic Trope at Minnesota’s Republican State Convention and to Today’s Statement from the Minnesota GOP
May 19, 2022
Minneapolis, MN – Steve Hunegs, Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC), issued the following statement:
“The Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) condemns the invocation of a notorious antisemitic trope by the campaign for Kim Crockett, the endorsed Republican candidate for Secretary of State, at this past weekend’s Minnesota Republican state convention in Rochester, MN. We do appreciate today’s statement released by David Hann chair of the Minnesota GOP, in which the party apologized and committed to working with us to educate their staff and candidates on antisemitism.
“In a video first displayed at the convention, which has since gone viral, Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon and attorney Marc Elias were depicted as puppets under the sway of George Soros. This classic antisemitic trope of powerful Jews – here Mr. Soros – manipulating our politics is increasingly prevalent and dangerous.
“The JCRC is compelled to speak out against antisemitic rhetoric from wherever the source. Be that now, or in the past from Representative Ilhan Omar in the context of alleged Jewish control over Congress.
“Because we have come to appreciate, however, that antisemitism does not always manifest itself as a hatred and is sometimes more an issue of blind spot, we offer free trainings on antisemitism which explore what antisemitism is and how it often works differently from other forms of racism. These trainings on antisemitism, which build upon our longstanding presentations to schools about Judaism and the Holocaust, have been well received by local units of government, churches, private businesses, nonprofits, and most recently the Judicial Branch.
“In that spirit and as the strictly nonpartisan public affairs voice for Minnesota’s Jewish community, we extended an offer to educate the staff from all major political parties, as well as their candidates and campaigns, on not just antisemitism, but also on the Jewish people. We thank David Hann, as well as Ken Martin, chair of the Minnesota DFL, for accepting our offer on behalf of their respective parties.
“Our divisions as a nation and as a state are very real, but with education and goodwill we can at least commit to ensuring that antisemitism has no place in our politics.”
Photo: A still from Crockett’s campaign video shown at the MN GOP convention, depicting George Soros puppeteering Jewish Democrats.
As the public affairs voice of the Jewish community, the JCRC fights antisemitism and prejudice, advocates for Israel, provides Holocaust education, promotes tolerance and social justice, and builds bridges across the Jewish and broader communities.