When they were brothers they might have been fighting or horsing around, but now U.S. Sen. Carl Levin and his brother, Rep. Sandy Levin, both from Michigan, are teaming up.
They are traveling around the nation to tout Barack Obama to Jewish voters. The brothers were in Philadelphia this past weekend visiting local Jewish communities and helping campaign for the democratic presidential nominee.
The two have been in Congress more than 20 years. Carl joined the Senate in 1978, while Sandy won election to the House in 1982 after serving in the Michigan Senate for several terms.
“We both feel very strongly that he (Obama) deserves the support of the Jewish community.” Carl said. “The Jewish voters can be confident that like John McCain, Obama is solid on Israel.”
Both Levins said that Obama is the right man to lead the country out of the current economic crisis.
“I very much favored it,” Carl said. “The alternative was to let the economy go over a cliff. The reasons for getting into the mess were because of the failed Bush economic policies. We got to pull together on a bipartisan basis. We need to take steps to protect people’s savings, pensions and jobs. This isn’t about protecting Wall Street, it’s about protecting average Americans.”
“McCain has a tax plan that would continue to benefit the very wealthy in the country,” Sandy said. “Obama’s plan would focus 95 percent on the middle and lower classes.”
On the topic of the Middle East and Israel, as it has been said throughout the campaign, Obama has earned the trust and the confidence because of his pledge to action in the region.
“He believes that Israel’s strength and survival is critical to the United States,” Carl said. “He wants to make sure Israel can defend itself and support itself.”
In dealing with Iran, Carl said that Obama has the right approach, while Republican nominee John McCain might have ruffled some feathers with some remarks about Russia.
“McCain wants to kick Russia out of the G8,” Carl said. “That’s reckless and stupid. We need them involved if we want to prevent Iran from having nuclear weapons.”
“He wants to go after Iran and the nuclear threats they pose,” the senator continued. “The United States has been too isolated from the rest of the world. If we can bring allies to our side then we are going to have a much stronger possibility of isolating Iran and stopping their nuclear threats.”
As the election nears, Sandy said that the democratic Jews in the House support and back Obama as he makes his presidential push.
“All of us without any exception are for Barack Obama. When it comes to Israel, Obama is as solid as a rock.”
(Mike Zoller can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)