Pro-Palestinian Group Disputes Booker’s Claim He Didn’t Know About Anti-Israel Sign


REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) has faced some heat for posing with a sign that read “From Palestine to Mexico, All the Walls Have Got to Go.” Booker’s spokesperson has said that Booker didn’t read the sign; now the pro-Palestinian group associated with the sign is disputing that claim.

Here is the picture of Booker with the U.S. Campaign for Palestinian Rights (USCPR) sign at the recent Netroots Nation conference:

Booker’s spokesperson, Jeff Giertz, told Jewish Telegraphic Agency that Booker “didn’t have time to read the sign.”

“From his cursory glance he thought it was talking about Mexico and didn’t realize it had anything to do with Israel,” Giertz said.

However, the USCPR told The Intercept that Booker had to have known what the sign said because they spoke to him prior to taking the photo.

“It was in this overwhelmingly supportive environment at Netroots Nation that our contingent had the opportunity to meet Sen. Cory Booker briefly and discuss our work for freedom, justice, and equality for the Palestinian people before posing for a photo with him,” a representative for the pro-Palestinian group said.

The Intercept’s Zaid Jilani also pointed out that one of the USCPR members was wearing a shirt emblazoned with the line, “Palestine is a queer, feminist, refugee, racial justice issue.”

The Simon Wiesenthal Center responded to Booker’s photo by touting the Israeli security fence for having “successfully halted suicide bombers” and asking the senator to clarify his stance on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

“We understand that the senator does not fully grasp what the sign said, but he is a leading American political figure who has been touted as a future President of our nation,” the Simon Wiesenthal Center said in a statement. “Therefore, The Simon Wiesenthal Center respectfully asks Senator Booker to clarify his stance on the anti-Israel BDS campaigns and on the anti-terrorist barriers that Israel has constructed.”

Booker has previously spoken in front of and taken money from pro-Israel groups, but has differed from them lately with his support of the Iran nuclear deal and vote against the Taylor Force Act, as well as a bill that prevents United States companies from engaging in the BDS movement.

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