Democratic congressman Mike McMahon, representing Staten Island and areas of Brooklyn, has compiled a list of Jewish donors to the campaign of one of his Republican opponents, Michael Grimm. The point of this exercise was, apparently, to show that Grimm "lacks support among voters in the district." The McMahon campaign gave the list to the New York Observer, as if this was not weird at all, and commented, "There is a lot of Jewish money, a lot of money from people in Florida and Manhattan, retirees." It's unclear why they didn't just compile a list of donors from outside the district. Perhaps Jewish automatically equals "outsider" (even though many people on the list did actually live in Staten Island and Brooklyn)?
No, no it has nothing to do with Jews, a campaign spokesman says, as if she were discussing something other than a list of Jews compiled into a file called "Grimm Jewish Money Q2":
Nelson stressed that the point of compiling the list was not to show that Grimm had a lot of Jewish support, but that he had little support in the district.
"I don't think ethnicity matters. When people look at who is funding his campaign it's not people who have a direct vested interest [in the district.]"
You're messing with us, right? You're trying to confuse us? None of this makes sense! McMahon certainly didn't think so he gave Nelson the boot after the story appeared last night (but not, it seems, the Jewish finance director who made the list). It remains to be seen, though, whether the firing will save McMahon from the most awkward meeting imaginable:
McMahon meanwhile has been trying to make his own in-roads into the Jewish community. A source said that he is scheduled to meet next week with several major Jewish donors.