Why I Am Endorsing Jonathan Herzog For Congress

Herzog in March 2020 (Paget Kagy)

I am a young, Jewish American who is progressive on a vast amount of issues.

Congressman Jerry Nadler sounds like one of the last people that I would oppose. Nadler has a 97% lifetime rating from the League of Conservation Voters, an F grade from the NRA, and was crucial in the impeachment of Donald Trump. Nadler is also one of the leading Jewish political figures in American, a graduate of Crown Heights Yeshiva and one of the leading Pro-Israel voices in Congress.

Then came Jonathan Herzog. Herzog is a 24-year-old graduate of Harvard and NYU, who took a leave of absence from Harvard Law School to work for Andrew Yang’s 2020 Presidential campaign. Herzog is a Jewish American, the child of Israeli immigrants, and grew up attending Ramaz Jewish Day School.

Similar to Yang, Herzog is running a campaign based off of the Humanity First message. Herzog is running to represent New York’s 10th Congressional District, which is home to nearly 200,000 Jews. New York is suffering from an anti-semitism crisis; the city of New York has seen a barrage of anti-semitic attacks ranging from stabbings to broken windows at synagogues. In 2018, 53% of the hate crimes in New York City took place against Jews. The best thing for Jewish New Yorkers-and all Americans-is for a Humanity First message to be exemplified.

On anti-semitism, Herzog knows how to address it. In a recent town hall on YouTube, Herzog mentioned that anti-semitism has always been present, but is fueled when a society is in decay.

Trust in institutions are at all-time lows, 70% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, and the average American is unable to pay an unexpected $500 bill. Herzog’s solution is to a universal basic income of $1,000 a month for every American over the age of 18. Herzog put it flawlessly when he said if you “lift the boot off of everyone’s throat, then the human tendency to scapegoat, to point fingers, which has historically united the far left and the far right in pointing to the Jew, will lighten.”

Herzog is 100% correct. To fight anti-semitism, the institutions have to be rebuilt and economic resources have to be given to the people. Children born in the 1940s had a 90% chance of out-earning their parents. For children born in the 1980s, it has become a 50-50 chance to out-earn their parents. When problems-such as those forms of inequality- exist, Jews will be blamed. However, if you give people the money and the resources to lift themselves up, then anti-semitism will significantly fall. We have to start offering solutions to anti-semitism and not just condemn it. Herzog is doing that.

While in Congress, Nadler has been a strong friend of Israel. Nadler has defended the United States giving foreign aid to Israel and has been a staunch opponent to the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS). That said, Nadler is 72 years old and won’t serve in Congress forever.

The Pro-Israel movement must find new leaders in Congress. Herzog is the child of Israeli immigrants and holds Israeli citizenship. If elected, he would be the first Israeli-American to serve in Congress. I trust Herzog’s word and know that in Congress, he will serve as a friend to the state of Israel.

Nadler is entirely satisfactory on many issues but is stuck in the past on just as many. Herzog, on the other hand, is addressing 21st century problems with 21st century solutions. His campaign platform addresses the automation of jobs, the Gig Economy, and the corporation’s use of American data.

Jonathan Herzog is an unparalleled candidate. On Day 1, he will be able to step into Congress and propose 21st Century Solutions while also continuing to stand up for the rights of Jews throughout the world.

About the Author
Blake is an 11th Grader at Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy in Bryn Mawr, PA. He most recently served as a Congressional District Lead (PA-4), a volunteer and Jewish Liaison for Andrew Yang's 2020 Presidential Campaign.
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