For decades, the Democratic Party has often taken the Jewish-American vote for granted. In no presidential election since the founding of the State of Israel in 1948 has the Democratic Party failed to win a plurality of the Jewish vote. Even the infamously anti-Israel Jimmy Carter won a 45% plurality share of the Jewish vote in 1980, outdoing Ronald Reagan's 39% of the Jewish vote. In 2016, 71% of Jews pulled the lever for Hillary Clinton. While the minority of American Jews who identify as Orthodox routinely favor the Republican Party at the ballot box, non-Orthodox Jews tend to overwhelmingly support Democrats.
Now, a new, Millennial-centric group — "Jexodus" — seeks to reverse this longstanding trend.
Per a press release from Jexodus's soft launch at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington, D.C. last Friday, here is how the group self-describes:
We are proud Jewish Millennials tired of living in bondage to leftist politics. We reject the hypocrisy, anti-Americanism, and anti-Semitism of the rising far-left. Progressives, Democrats, and far too many old-school Jewish organizations take our support for granted. After all, we’re Jewish, and Jews vote for Democrats.
We are determined and we are unafraid to speak for ourselves. As combatants and veterans of the campus wars, we know the threat progressivism poses to Jews. We’ve had front row seats witnessing anti-Semites hide behind the thin veil of anti-Zionism. We know the BDS movement harbors deep hatred not only for Israel, but for Jews. We’re done standing with supposed Jewish leaders and allegedly supportive Democrats who rationalize, mainstream, and promote our enemies. We’d rather spend forty years wandering in the desert than belong to a party that welcomes Jew-haters like Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Jexodus is the brainchild of Jeff Ballabon — a longstanding fixture in Republican Jewish circles — and an assortment of like-minded activists like Bruce Abramson, Ballabon's frequent op-ed coauthor. Some of Ballabon's prior successful ventures include starting the now-annual Shabbat at CPAC and his work on the Republican Party's Israel-specific platform language drafted at the Party's 2016 national convention; Ballabon is widely credited with helping lead the charge on changes made to the Party's 2016 platform that expressly removed any references to or mandates for a "two-state solution" with the Palestinian-Arabs, and overtly stated that Israel is not an "occupier" with respect to its lawful presence in Judea and Samaria.
Jexodus's national spokesperson is Elizabeth Pipko, a religious Jew and part-time model with close ties to President Trump's 2020 reelection campaign. In an exclusive interview with The Daily Wire, Pipko described Jexodus as a Millennial-centric movement to help "get Jews to stand up for themselves and what their religion stands for." Pipko discussed media bias and how the casual cable news viewer is oftentimes more likely to hear about President Trump's alleged anti-Semitism than he/she is likely to hear about Ilhan Omar's (actual) anti-Semitism.
Jexodus will initially launch in New York and Florida, which are both home to sizable Jewish populations. From there, Pipko says that the plan will be to expand to across the country — everywhere from Pennsylvania and Ohio to Arizona and California. Jexodus will initially consist of physical rallies, where speakers can discuss their stories of how difficult it was for them to unshackle the proverbial bondage of the Democratic Party. The Exodus-centric theme of fleeing from bondage will purposefully overlap with the Jewish holiday of Passover, which will be celebrated around the time of the group's launch next month.
"I want it to be one giant party," says Pipko. Alas, time will tell how many erstwhile leftist Jews will join that party.