Fetterman says there are 'no conditions' to his unequivocal support of Israel

 December 31, 2023

Having recently surprised many -- on both the left and the right -- with expressions of staunch independence, Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) just revealed the particular hill on which he is willing to die, saying that his support of Israel comes with “no conditions,” as the Jerusalem Post explains.

Leaving no room for doubt about where he stands on the issue during a December interview with Politico, Fetterman stated, “I would be the last man standing to be absolutely there on the Israeli side on this....”

Fetterman holds forth

The Oct. 7 Hamas attacks on Israel prompted Fetterman to stake out an especially strong position, one which ruffled feathers on the progressive flank of his party.

When asked if the degree of hostility he has received from the left has surprised him in any way, the senator said, “I mean, of course, I expected that there will always be a diversity of opinions and that as long as things go that the Democratic caucus might splinter more.”

Regardless of internal divisions, however, Fetterman made no bones about his stance concerning the terror that struck Israel, saying, “I grieve, and it's awful the incredible civilian deaths and the suffering. It is awful. War is hell, as they say.”

Fetterman continued, “But only one side has used civilians as human shields. Only one side has broken the ceasefires. Only one side will systematically rape, torture, and mutilate Israeli women and girls in the most unspeakable, awful ways.”

“Not a progressive”

It is not just the issue of Israel that has set Fetterman apart from some of his more liberal colleagues in recent weeks, as he has also taken surprising positions on immigration as well as on what he believes should happen with regard to Democrat Sen. Bob Menendez, who has been indicted on corruption charges and who the Pennsylvania lawmaker believes should be ousted from the upper chamber.

Fetterman maintains that nobody should be shocked by his recent statements saying, as NBC News noted, “I'm not a progressive. I just think I'm a Democrat that is very committed to choice and other things.”

“But with Israel, I'm going to be on the right side of that. And immigration is something near and dear to me, and I think we do have to effectively address it as well,” he added.

In terms of Menendez's future, Fetterman pulls no punches, saying sarcastically, “Oh, Bob Menendez. What a guy. What a guy. He's still running his mouth against [President Joe] Biden right now. He needs to go. I don't understand why he can be here, having expelled [former Rep. George] Santos. But I'm sure there might be a very innocent explanation of having gold bars in your mattress and overstuffed envelopes of cash,” a reference to the indictment against the New Jersey lawmaker.

An island unto himself

As The Hill recently reported, despite asserting that his positions on key issues should not come as a surprise to his colleagues, Fetterman is realistic about the anger he has fueled on both sides of the aisle.

Referencing his prior health battles, Fetter said, “What I have found out over the last couple years if the right, and now the left, are hoping that I die.”

“They are the ones that are rooting for another blood clot. They have both now been wishing that I die,” he added.

However, longtime GOP strategist Christopher Nicholas suggests that there is no such animosity on the right, saying, “For a lot of Republicans, it's been a pleasant surprise. Here is a freshman taking some strong stances...I just seem someone who's 'Well, that's what I think, and I say what I think,'” and that is something most Americans can respect, even if they do not always agree.

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